Policy Watch

Education’s always changing, and it can be hard to keep track. Policy Watch is the easy way to make sure you stay up to date with the latest developments.

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 service through Steve's Twitter feed @SteveBesley or by signing up for email updates.

About Steve

As head of UK education policy at Pearson, Steve’s been running the Policy Watch service for almost 20 years. He’ll keep you informed on all things education, along with the rest of his subscribers – there were more than 10,000 at the last count!

The latest from Policy Watch

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  • Policy Tracker – Keeping track of what happened in the world of education in June 2019

    It’s been a month which has seen the exam season start to draw to a close, the Prime Minister move to strengthen her legacy with announcements on mental health and funding, and the Tory leadership hopefuls spray promises around on education spending. In other news, the DfE has outlined initial funding plans for T levels, completed a first stage consultation on qualifications up to Level 3, published guidance on Relationships Education and issued an updated departmental plan. Elsewhere the Festival and Conference season has been in full swing where issues of funding, school assessment, post-18 education and future learning, have been among the topics discussed.

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  • Policy Tracker – Keeping track of what happened in the world of education in May 2019

    Policy Tracker

    Quite a month. The Prime Minister declared her intention to step down, the exams season got under way, the long-awaited Timpson and Augar reports finally emerged, Ofsted confirmed its new inspection arrangements for this autumn on, the government outlined arrangements about baseline assessment and T level industry placements and big Papers on 16-19 and post-18 funding were published.

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  • Policy Tracker – Keeping track of what happened in the world of education in April 2019

    Policy Tracker

    It’s been a busy month for teacher union conferences where exam pressures, teacher workloads, funding and health issues have been among the topics raised and where Jeremy Corbyn’s call to scrap the current system of SATs attracted considerable media attention. The month has also seen consultation close on Ofsted’s proposed new inspection framework with a huge response reported and Ofqual issue its latest survey of perceptions of qualifications. Special needs funding, pupil off rolling, college oversight and the financial health of universities have each been the subject of important reports during the month while government headlines have included the launching of a new widespread Edtech strategy, a major summit on gang crime, a new consultation on internet safety, the listing of the first 12 Institutes of Technology and moves to ensure EU teachers will be able to have their qualifications recognised to work in the UK

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  • Policy Tracker - Keeping track of what happened in the world of education in February 2019

    Policy Tracker

    A shorter month but no shortage of activity particularly political. For education, the Chair of Education Committee raised eyebrows with a speech calling for GCSEs to be scrapped in favour of a Bacc at age 18. Contractors to develop the first two T levels were announced and the consultation on funding for T levels closed with the Association of Colleges calling for increased investment for T levels. Contrasting stats were published in HE with uni applications up at the landmark stage of mid-January but salary levels for top staff still raising questions. Finally, monthly economic figures proved positive and the Institute for Fiscal Studies set out the context for the forthcoming Spending Review.

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