Archive for the ‘Other Articles’ Category

Other Articles Wed 15 May

School performance – why intake still matters

Is there a problem with school accountability in this country? Yes. Is there an easy solution? Probably not. The latest consultation on this issue has just closed, to remarkably little fanfare. Perhaps everyone was so preoccupied with the National Curriculum Review, or taken aback by the climb down on the EBCs, that less attention was […]

Other Articles, Policy Wed 30 Jan

The Coalition Agreement – two years on

The most striking feature of the Coalition Agreement on schools, two and a half years on, is not what has or hasn’t been achieved but what wasn’t included in the first place. The document’s most high profile policy proposals  – the establishment of free schools and a pupil premium for disadvantaged pupils – have been […]

Other Articles, Policy Thu 1 Apr

An alternative manifesto for parents

Parents will be centre stage in the coming election, just as they have been for the last twenty years. Much will be said and done in our name and the debate will undoubtedly be  coloured by the views of a small group of media commentators whose personal experiences are not necessarily representative of the nation […]

Why parents don’t have to start their own schools to be “involved”

Its 20 years since my first child stated school. In that time parents have been urged to exercise choice, power, make representations, sign contracts, chivvy teachers, call in Ofsted, join governing bodies, start PTAs, help in the class room or simply make sure their children get to school on time, well fed and rested, wearing […]

Other Articles Mon 23 Feb

Off ramps, on ramps

The Americans have a name for it –‘off ramps and on ramps’ – the process by which well qualified women either give up work completely or cut back their hours once they have children. In the more family friendly world of British working mothers it is known euphemistically at the ‘mummy track’. We may get […]

Other Articles Tue 23 Jan

Parents on the naughty step

Late last year the Family and Parenting Institute, a charity which I chair, commissioned a poll  to examine what impact the current focus on parenting in the print and broadcast media was having on parents. It was a subject staff and trustees of the charity had been discussing for some time – the inevitable consequence […]

Other Articles Sun 18 Apr

Forget Oxbridge and give me London any day

I suppose I was once what could be called a “university refuser”. I love every minute of my schools days in North London thanks to my active social life but did very little work and left with unimpressive A levels, little interest in higher education and a strong urge to go round America on a […]