Policy Tracker – Keeping track of what happened in the world of education in January 2016

Policy Tracker

One month into a new year and the new agenda is well underway, taking in: school performance, the EBacc, apprenticeship volumes, HE reform, safeguarding and life skills. It’s all here.

Key headlines from the month

  • School admissions process. Government prepares to consult on a more transparent system
  • KS2. Government prepares to pilot multiplication tests for 11-year-olds this summer
  • Exams. The Joint Council confirms the position on summer exams ahead of Ramadan
  • GCSE, AS, A levels. Latest listing for 2016 teaching published
  • EBacc. 36.2% of pupils in all schools entered in 2015 according to league tables
  • AS levels. New UCAS survey shows continuing support as part of curriculum balance
  • Teachers' pay. Unions express concerns in a joint letter to the Review Body
  • Teachers. TeachFirst launches a new career-switchers campaign
  • RSCs. Education Committee raises concerns about management of the school system
  • Schools financial health and efficiency. The DfE launches a new efficiency metric
  • Counter-extremism. Government launches a new website
  • Mentoring. PM announces a new scheme
  • Careers. Jobcentre Plus advisers start working with schools
  • Work experience. Government prepares new plan to help disadvantaged youngsters
  • 16-19 funding. EFA confirms stable rates for 2016/17
  • Adult skills funding. SFA publish latest rates and rules for 2016/17
  • Functional Skills. The ETF launches the first stage of its review
  • ESOL. PM announces new £20m Community Fund
  • Area Reviews. BIS announces the listings for wave 3
  • Traineeships. Rules changed to allow other providers to offer from February
  • Apprenticeship levy. The CBI sets out 4 guiding principles
  • Apprenticeship Delivery Board. Government announces names
  • Skilled Workers. Migration Committee proposes new employer skills levy
  • Learning and Work Institute. Launched out of the merger of NIACE and CESI
  • AELP. Chief Exec Stewart Segal to leave in April
  • UCAS. Latest data reveals gender gaps in certain subjects
  • Personal (UCAS) Statements. Sutton Trust calls for clearer criteria and support
  • Top Graduate recruitment. Up again this year according to High Fliers research
  • Maintenance grants. Government votes through transition to loans

Reports/Publications of the month (in order of publication)

Speeches of the month

Quotes of the month

“We remain on the long walk to a greater Britain.” The Prime Minister’s New Year message sketches out the long and winding road

“Your dreams are our dreams.” The Prime Minister offers hope to those with poor life chances

“If 2015 was the year for setting out our economic plan, 2016 is the year for delivery of it.” The Chancellor stresses the need to press on

“Like pass the parcel, you tear away one layer of wrapping paper only to find another underneath.” Nick Clegg on how deep inequality of opportunity often runs

“Maths is a non-negotiable of a good education.” The Education Secretary defends the new times tables tests for 11-year-olds

“Some of the big beasts of the current educational jungle are due to leave the forest.” Prominent blogger and head teacher Geoff Barton on what lies ahead in 2016

“Let the SLT take over the teaching of someone for a day so they can have a focused observation of another’s teaching.” One of a dozen CPD ideas from Sir Tim Brighouse

Word or phrase of the month

‘Bucket list.’ A list of things still left to do

Steve Besley
Head of Policy

Policy Watches are intended to help colleagues keep up to date with national developments. Information is correct at the time of writing and is offered in good faith. No liability is accepted for decisions made on the basis of information given.