Natalie Goodman, a teaching assistant, had been struggling to buy food for more than a month by the time someone at her school noticed. “I couldn’t afford to eat. I didn’t have money for food. I would come home from school and sit in my flat and worry about paying my rent.”
It was her sudden weight loss – more than a stone in four weeks – that prompted a colleague to ask whether she was OK. Her landlord had sent her an eviction letter to leave the flat that had been her home for 19 years.Continue reading...
More universities are developing courses to help refugees and asylum seekers prepare for UK higher education
When volunteers at the Calais “Jungle” camp in Northern France asked Omer AKA Dream, how they could help refugees like him, he was clear. “We need a library,” he told them. “Bring books.”
It was while working in the new Jungle Books Library that Dream, 32, from Sudan, came across two academics from the University of East London, Corinne Squire and Aura Lounasmaa. The women were travelling to France every couple of weeks as volunteers with other students and academics to deliver a short, accredited, undergraduate course on life stories for inhabitants of the camp. Dream signed up.Continue reading...
Headteachers are cutting staff, courses and trips – so it doesn’t add up that their budgets have increased
Are you a fan of BBC’s Question Time? I always look forward to seeing education ministers trying to justify policies on that show. I saw you on there a short while ago and found myself wondering if you had watched your predecessors facing the questions before you.
I have a feeling that the programme has proved something of a graveyard for you folks. Michael Gove waved his hands at Emily Thornberry while saying at her, “Yadda, yadda, yadda”, and he was removed from office for being “toxic”. Nicky Morgan, usually a confident and fluent person, seemed to freeze and was dropped not long after. And then Justine Greening seemed unwilling or unable to justify what she had been asked to say, and sure enough, she was soon gone too. Is it that you think the live audience is a sort of proxy parents’ evening, and trying to persuade us is much harder than chatting on the sofa with Andrew Marr?Continue reading...
Broadcaster argues ‘best university system in the world’ is being carelessly destroyed
Melvyn Bragg has said Britain is becoming a stupid country, in part because its university system is being destroyed.
The broadcaster and Labour peer criticised the state of British higher education in an interview with the magazine Radio Times.Continue reading...
What are we doing to our children (Pupils tell of new GCSEs’ toll on their mental health, 23 June)? My daughter is part of this year’s GCSE cohort, the first guinea pig year of the government’s new “hostile environment” for secondary students. Having revised her socks off, she is now thoroughly demoralised. Questions in every subject paper taken so far seemed designed not to allow her to shine, but to frustrate; to highlight what students couldn’t know rather than what they have covered in depth. In their pursuit of a statistical drop in higher grades, examiners seem to have intentionally set questions that either fall outside the expected material or are so ambiguously worded that it becomes a lottery how many will interpret them correctly. This “Lady or the Tiger” trial by ordeal, certainly in the case of my daughter, is a loss of love for the subjects she was looking forward to at A-level. The instilling of passion is the most important role of an educator. The examination system now seems intent on doing quite the reverse.
• Reading pupils’ comments, I found I was weeping by the time I got to the end because I know the stories are completely true and not down to teenage hysteria. My granddaughter worked so hard throughout this long exam period, shutting herself away and suffering from migraines and stress-related withdrawal. To think that this experience was multiplied in families across the country is heartbreaking. My son and daughter-in-law became anxious to the point that their own lives became difficult. Should we be subjecting our 16-year-olds to this torture? Might we weed more gently? I note at the end of the article you give a contact number for the Samaritans. Shame on you, Michael Gove, I will never forgive you!
My father, Peter Gordon, who has died aged 90, left school at 16 but became an author and a professor of history and humanities at the Institute of Education, UCL. A popular head of department in his nearly 30 years at the IOE, he pursued his twin fields of expertise, political history and the history of education, and wrote or edited more than 30 books as well as numerous papers.
He was a meticulous researcher, and his biographical work was also characterised by narrative talent. Written with warmth and respect, his monographs on the 5th Earl Spencer (The Red Earl), the Wake family (tracing 30 generations of the Northamptonshire family), and his history of royal education reached popular as well as academic readerships. Co-authoring one of his later works, Musical Visitors to Britain (2005), I had first-hand experience of his outstanding skills as teacher and mentor.Continue reading...
Suicide rates among university students show slight rise but a significant gender difference
Suicide rates among university students in England and Wales have gone up slightly over the last decade, according to official statistics, which reveal that young male students are significantly more likely to kill themselves than female students.
In the 12 months to July 2017, ninety-five students killed themselves, which equates to 4.7 suicides per 100,000 students, figures from the Office for National Statistics (ONS) reveal.Continue reading...
Ja, findet Bundesfamilienministerin Giffey. Damit förderten Schulen die Teilnahme am Schwimmunterrichten - zum Wohl der Kinder. CDU-Vize Klöckner hatte zuvor die Beschaffung von Burkinis durch ein Gymnasmium kritisiert, da diese "ein frauendiskriminierendes Rollenverständnis" zementierten.
Die Bundesfamilienministerin will das Thema nicht zum "Untergang des Abendlandes" hochstilisieren. Es gehe darum, dass alle Kinder schwimmen lernen könnten.
It was Michael Gove who before the Brexit referendum said “people in this country have had enough of experts”. The highly educated Mr Gove was mining a rich seam of voters fed up with, and disregarding of, expert opinion. Brexiters have continued in this perjorative style. Only last week the foreign secretary, Boris Johnson, reportedly gave a terse and pungent imprecation to diplomats who raised the issue of companies doubting his wisdom about the UK leaving the EU without a trade deal. “Fuck business,” Britain’s top diplomat replied undiplomatically.
In fact both rabble-rousing Brexiters and experts have more in common than either would admit. Populists claim to have a special insight into the will of the people, able to dispense with debate and discussion. Hence Mr Johnson warning prime minister Theresa May against a “bog-roll Brexit” that was “soft, yielding and seemingly infinitely long”. By contrast, experts argue it’s necessary to insulate policies from vested interests and the vicissitudes of politics. More independent agencies should take over arms of the state. This has captured thinking in the UK, where the last few decades have seen a steady growth in the number of agencies, commissions and regulators which routinely draft legally binding rules. Not only did they provide a way for politicians to look as if they are doing something but they allow them to duck tough decisions until they cannot. Just look at public sector pay, which could only apparently be raised via independent pay review bodies – until politicians decided they were unnecessary.Continue reading...
Die Hochschulen verlangen, dass das Geld aus dem Hochschulpakt künftig jährlich aufgestockt wird. Schließlich erhalten außeruniversitäre Forschungseinrichtungen auch jedes Jahr mehr. Doch eine Einigung zwischen Bund und Ländern wird sehr schwer.
Auf einem Abendgymnasium holen Menschen ihr Abitur nach, die wissen, wie es ist, einen Neuanfang zu wagen. Wo könnten Geflüchtete also besser integriert werden als hier?