Policy Watch

Keep up with what’s happening in education policy

Policy Watch is our regular policy update service, covering national and international developments in the world of education. We try to keep things simple, sharing the latest news and information with you through weekly updates, monthly summaries, papers and events.

You can access the Policy Watch by signing up for email updates below.

The latest from Policy Watch

  • Highlights of the week ending 31 March

    There has been a lot going on this week, with publications and data drops as the government approaches the Easter recess. This included a policy paper from DfE on AI in education, schools capital announcements, and support for disadvantaged pupils (more in Top Stories). 

  • Highlights of the week ending 24 March

    This week the National Foundation for Educational Research (NFER)  published a new report revealing that the number of teacher vacancies posted by schools was 93% higher in the academic year up to February 2023, than at the same point in the year before the pandemic. The report calls for a long-term strategy on teacher pay to halt what it describes as a growing workforce crisis, as figures indicate that the initial teacher training (ITT) recruitment target is likely to be missed again.

  • Highlights of the week ending 17 March

    This week the Chancellor delivered his first full Budget, with a number of announcements around education and skills. This included the establishment of ‘returnerships’, a new offer promoting existing skills interventions to the over-50s; the enhancement of the existing Mid-life MOT strategy, which covers careers guidance; the delivery of 12 new investment zones which will have access to funding for skills and apprenticeships; investment in childcare; and increased devolution to Greater Manchester and the West Midlands. Following the Budget, the Government published details of the new ‘trailblazer deeper devolution deals’ for Greater Manchester and the West Midlands

  • Highlights of the week ending 10 March

    It's been a busy week with the long awaited publication of the government's response on its Lifelong Loan Entitlement and the announcement of delays to three new T Levels (see top stories).

    This week also saw the Industry and Regulators Lords Committee held the first session of their inquiry into the work of the Office for Students (OfS). Peers heard from Dame Nicola Dandridge (former Chief Executive of the OfS), and Sir Michael Barber (its former Chair), about the establishment, role and remit of the OfS, and its relationships with government and HE institutions. Another further session is set for Tuesday 14 March, with ex-Ministers, Charles Clarke and Lord Johnson of Marylebone.

  • Highlights of the week ending 3 March

    This week saw the second reading of the Lifelong Learning (Higher Education Fee Limits) Bill in the House of Commons. MPs from across the house pressed Government for further detail on the proposals, with Gillian Keegan and Robert Halfon assuring them that detail on the policy and the mechanism of the bill would be published before report stage. Representing Labour, Matt Western said the Opposition are prepared to support the Minister throughout the bill’s passage.