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Month: January 2017

Andy McNab says joyless education is damaging poor children's literacy

Bravo Two Zero author, who didn’t learn to read until he was 16, says his experience working in schools shows that a box-ticking approach to tuition inhibits reading skills of the less privileged Government literacy policy that emphasises grammar over enjoyment is discriminating against poor children and has contributed to England’s position at the bottom of a ranking of reading ability in developed nations, according to SAS soldier-turned-bestselling writer Andy McNab. The Bravo Two Zero author, a reading ambassador for the literacy charity the Reading Agency, said children in failing schools were hit by a double whammy because teachers had no time to encourage the enjoyment of reading because their time was taken up “box-ticking” for Ofsted inspections and dealing with students’ basic needs. “The whole educational system is so clogged now that there is no time for teachers to encourage kids, and the enjoyment of reading is lost,” he said. Continue...

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How to write for the Teacher Network

Here are our tips on how to pitch a strong idea and write a successful piece for the Teacher Network We have a huge, active community of members on the Guardian Teacher Network, many of whom write blogs and comment pieces for us. We value these contributions enormously – you are the real experts on the sector and our coverage is enhanced by your insider experience of how things work on the ground. Continue...

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Government to rebroker Manchester free schools founded by charity boss

Two free schools in Greater Manchester will be re-brokered to new multi-academy trusts after one was placed into special measures on its first inspection and the second given a financial notice to improve. The Collective Spirit free school in Oldham, which opened in September 2013, received an Ofsted judgement of “inadequate” in all categories in May last year. A follow-up inspection, in November last year, found school lunches were “such poor quality that pupils often throw their lunch away.” And the Manchester Creative Studio in Oldham, which opened in September 2014, received a financial notice to improve in June 2016 after misjudging its pupil numbers. Both free schools are led by chief executive Raja Miah, the former charity head who won an MBE for his social integration work in 2004. He is also listed as a member of both schools. An identical statement published on both the schools’ websites states they will be handed to new multi-academy trusts once “suitable partners can be identified”, as first reported by the Manchester Evening News. But MPs are calling for the free schools to be closed down. Jim McMahon, Labour MP for Oldham West and Royton, who opposed the sale of former South Chadderton...

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