Ofsted reform is very much on the agenda. Rightly so. The impact of inspection is now one of the factors contributing to the decline in morale of the teaching profession and, unintentionally, to our inability to close the gaps in outcomes between the rich and the poor. Much of this debate focuses on the design […]
Coastal regeneration: evidence to the House of Lords enquiry
It was a pleasure to give evidence on Monday to the House of Lords committee on regenerating coastal communities. From an education perspective, coastal schools face the same challenges as many others. These can be exacerbated by increased deprivation and, for some, isolation. What could help? Firstly, things that will benefit all schools – funding, […]
Paying tribute to Ruth Perry
Trigger warning: discussion of suicide Although there are times when it may not feel it, I think head teachers are generally well respected across society. They certainly deserve respect. I’ve worked with leaders in most sectors and have rarely seen roles of such breadth, complexity and impact. And backed by so little resource. Every head […]
Reading the Casey Review into the Metropolitan Police
The Casey Review into the standards and culture of the Metropolitan Police Service is deeply disturbing but, after repeated revelations over many years, sadly not surprising. It describes pervasive sexism, racism and homophobia. One of the country’s worst sex offenders was found inside the police service. Institutional racism remains decades after the Macpherson report. In […]
Kit is not enough and not all access is good. We must solve three new challenges: the context in which digital technology is used, the purposes it is used for and the chance to distribute opportunity and hope more widely across the country.
Too much writing, particularly at work, is a form of ritual, hollowed of meaning. The transmission of purpose, the changing of minds or the spur to action is an afterthought…
One recovery plan to rule them all
A short piece in Schools Week on planning for an educational recovery, with reference to Bilbo Baggins: Recovery can’t be achieved with sparsely spread resources If we want more from our schools, we need to give them more. And we need to weight those resources to the schools facing the biggest challenge. It also would […]
25th May 2020: looking back from one year on
My thoughts are with members of the Black community and their allies in this significant and difficult week.
On the Teach First website, as promised, I’ve written about what we have done in the year since the tragic murder of George Floyd and about what comes next for us.
Sarah Everard and Meghan Markle
Warning: this post discusses violence against women. The clash of hope and despair this week, between the celebration of International Women’s Day, the Meghan Markle interview and the murder of Sarah Everard, feels so stark. It is clear from talking to friends, family and colleagues that Sarah’s murder is an extreme end of a continuum […]
Which schools should we emulate?
Through a high stakes and narrowly quantified definition of performance, we allow institutions to appear that they are high performing by externalising some of their true costs: they make other actors in the system pay some of the price for their results…