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Manually compiled from over 300 sources - covering mainstream media, education press, education unions, professional bodies, government departments and agencies, and key education commentators and bloggers. 

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Three of the week's headlines ...
New policy for headteachers to pause Ofsted inspections after Ruth Perry's death
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Concrete crisis: Calls to increase exam grades at schools worst hit by RAAC
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Organised crime may be profiting from student loan fraud worth £60m - report
Read more
Visit EdNews to filter all the education news by phase or topic
Three pieces of policy news - by phase
Follow this link to view the full version of Steve Besley's popular policy round-up - including an overview of all the important stories, his top headlines of the week, tweets and posts of note, the most memorable quotes, not-to-be-missed statistics and what to look out for next week.
As your starter for ten, we've chosen three items from each phase below ...
Keynote. Michelle Donelan, the secretary of state for science, innovation and technology, set out her priorities for the year ahead in a keynote speech, listing in particular the creation of a new scale-up forum, improved data access, and a new regulatory support service for businesses.
Labour market estimates. The Office for National Statistics (ONS) published its estimates on the labour market for the last quarter of last year showing a further fall in the number of vacancies, a slight fall in the overall employment rate and a slower increase in wages, with the data subject to confirmation next month.
Education Day. UNESCO confirmed that the theme for next week’s International Day of Education will be ‘learning for lasting peace’ with a series of events and a particular focus, including a new guide, on tackling hate crime.
Support for teachers. The government issued an update on measures to support teacher recruitment and wellbeing, pointing to the gradual adoption of the Education Staff Wellbeing charter, new guidance this spring on tackling the harassment of staff and on workloads, and the additional investment being made in mental health support as key factors.
Workloads. The government and unions reported on progress being made in reducing teacher workloads, reiterating their commitment to building on the earlier 2016 recommendation, consulting on changing the current system of performance related pay, updating the list of admin tasks that teachers should not be required to do, and looking into other factors such as the burden of accountability, before reporting formally in March this year.
Ofsted. Ofsted issued its formal response to the coroner’s report on the Ruth Perry Inquest setting out a number of steps it will now take including establishing a procedure for providers who have concerns about an inspection, undertaking a dedicated learning review of Ofsted’s response to the tragic case and conducting a Big Listening exercise into the future.
Funding pilot. The government invited applications from colleges to its Funding Simplification pilot which will look at ways of simplifying rules around funding, audit and reporting in areas like adult skills and Skills Bootcamps and run from August 2024 – August 2025.
Degree apprenticeships. The Office for Students (OfS) reported that ten colleges were among the 50+ successful bidders from the first round of bids for funds to develop degree apprenticeships with a second funding round just completed and a third due this spring.
Apprenticeship report. The Learning and Work Institute reported on issues around apprenticeship completion rates in a second paper for the St Martin’s Group, concluding that for employers, providing time off for off the job training can be a big factor calling as a result for a working group to be set up to look at how to improve things.
University finances. Universities UK published its commissioned report undertaken by PwC last year into the financial sustainability of UKHE, concluding that ‘institutions are facing significant financial challenges’ with many adopting cost-saving strategies such as back-office transformation but equally calling on the government to relieve pressures where possible.
V-C view. The Times Higher published the results of its survey among vice-chancellors of current concerns with many worried about both current and future funding levels and looking anxiously at options such as future domestic and international recruitment levels, but ultimately acknowledging that the current funding system wasn’t working.
Finance at franchised providers. The National Audit Office (NAO) called for stronger accountabilities and clearer responsibilities and system governance as it reported on concerns about potential fraud and abuse of finances at franchised providers.
Access all issues of Steve Besley's Education Eye
Latest research, reports and studies
Breaking the vicious circles of informal employment and low-paying work | OECD
Higher Education Staff Statistics: UK 2022/23 | HESA
Rising school absence: what do we know and what can we do? | IOE
Developing Beach School approaches to support an effective climate change curriculum | BERA
Voice 21 Oracy Schools Programme: Evaluation report | FFT Education Datalab
Which screen media types enhance vocabulary learning in young children most effectively? | BEIB
Is Literacy First effective in the long term? Insights from a multisite RCT | BEIB
Effective personalized and adaptive learning technologies to improve literacy | BEIB
The positive effects of higher grading standards on student math achievement | BEIB
Post-Covid tutoring boosts economy by over £4 billion | Public First
Rethinking school inspection: NAHT's latest report shows why Ofsted's current inspection model is 'unfit for purpose' and calls for urgent systemic reform | NAHT
Enabling better outcomes: a wider view of apprenticeship success | Learning & Work Institute
Investigation into student finance for study at franchised higher education providers | NAO
Regional research capacity: what role in levelling up? | HEPI
Cost-of-living support for students | Russell Group
Local authorities struggle with delivery of wraparound childcare amid significant funding challenges, and in recruiting staff | Coram Family and Childcare
Search our education research section
Parliament and elsewhere
Science Committee private meeting on the governance of AI (Tuesday 23 January).
Westminster Hall debate on school attendance (Tuesday 23 January).
Westminster Hall debate on availability of books in primary schools (Wednesday 24 January).
UNESCO’s International Day of Education (Wednesday 24 January).
BETT UK 2024 (Wednesday 24 January – Friday 26 January).
Nuffield Foundation hosted webinar on ‘The Future of Work and Skills’ (Wednesday 24 January).
Schools North East Academies Conference (Thursday 25 January).
Events and CPD opportunities
Tuesday 23 January: New to Managing Data | ASCL (in-person event)
Wednesday 24 January: Successful Timetable Construction - Leeds | ASCL (in-person event)
Wednesday 24 January: ASCL Trust Leaders Conference 2024 | ASCL (in-person event)
Wednesday 24 January: Place and opportunity: a better future for work and skills | Nuffield Foundation (online event)
Wednesday 24 - Thursday 25 January: Safeguarding Children in the Digital Age | CYP Now (online event)
Wednesday 24 - Friday 26 January: Bett UK 2024 | Bett (in-person event)
Thursday 25 January: National Apprenticeships Conference 2024 | Government Events (online event)
Thursday 25 January: Effective Governance and Leadership | Inside Government (online event)
Thursday 25 January: AoC Governance Professionals' Conference 2024 | AoC (in-person event)
Thursday 25 January: Academies Conference 2024 | Schools North East (in-person event)
Sunday 27 - Monday 28 January: Strictly RE 2024 | Natre (online event)
Running an education-related event that you'd like to see included in our calendar? Email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. with details and a link to the booking info.
See all events
Three interesting daily facts
On this day in 1506 the first contingent of Swiss Guards arrived at the Vatican.
On this day in 1879 a British garrison of 150 held off up to 4,000 Zulu warriors in the Battle of Rorke's Drift.
On this day in 1901 Queen Victoria died at Osborne House on the Isle of Wight after a reign which lasted almost 64 years.

On this day in 1045 Edward the Confessor, King of England, married Edith, daughter of the Earl of Godwin.
On this day in 1978 Sweden became the first nation in the world to ban aerosol sprays due to their harmful effect on the earth's ozone layer.
On this day in 1997 Madeleine Albright became the first female secretary of state following unanimous confirmation by the US Senate.

On this day in 1908 Lieutenant General Robert Baden-Powell published 'Scouting for Boys' as a manual for self-instruction in outdoor skills and self-improvement. 
On this day in 1972 Japanese sergeant Shoichi Yokoi was found the jungles of Guam where he had been hiding for 28 years since the end of World War II.
On this day in 1984 Apple Computer Inc unveiled its revolutionary Macintosh personal computer.

On this day in 1840 an American naval expedition under Charles Wilkes was the first to identify Antarctica as a new continent.
On this day in 1858 Felix Mendelssohn's 'Wedding March' was first played at the wedding of Queen Victoria's daughter Princess Victoria to crown prince Frederick William of Prussia.
On this day in 1924 the first Winter Olympic Games opened in Chamonix, France.

On this day in 1871 the Rugby Football Union was formed at a meeting of 21 clubs at London's Pall Mall Restaurant.
On this day in 1950 the Constitution of India came into effect making the Republic of India the most populous democracy in the world.
On this day in 1980 the US Olympic Committee voted against the Moscow games in response to the Soviet military invasion of Afghanistan the previous month.
Awareness days from around the world

Love Your Liver Month, Veganuary, Dry January, Big Schools Birdwatch.
Walk Your Dog Month, National Mentoring Month, National Slavery and Human Trafficking Prevention Month, World Health Esteem Month, National CBD Month, National Soup Month, National Slow Cooking Month, National Braille Literacy Month, Veganuary, Dry January, National Hobby Month, Hot Tea Month, National Oatmeal Month, National Blood Donor Month, National Menudo Month, National Bath Safety Month, National Black Diamond Month, National Sunday Supper Month, Cervical Cancer Awareness Month, Red January (Beat The Winter Blues), Ginuary.


Cervical Cancer Prevention Week.
National School Choice Week, National CRNA Week, National Catholic Schools Week, Tax Identity Theft Awareness Week, National Fresh Squeezed Juice Week, Meat Week, Farmhouse Breakfast Week, Family Mediation Week, Snow Sculpting Week, Week of Prayer for Christian Unity.


National Polka Dot Day, National Sanctity of Human Life Day, Celebration of Life Day, National Blonde Brownie Day, National Answer Your Cat’s Questions Day, National Hot Sauce Day, Wellington Anniversary Day, Community Manager Appreciation Day.


National Pie Day, National Handwriting Day, Snowplow Mailbox Hockey Day, Speak Up and Succeed Day, National Rhubarb Pie Day, National Measure Your Feet Day.


International Day of Education.
National Peanut Butter Day, Library Shelfie Day, National Beer Can Appreciation Day, National Compliment Day, Paul Pitcher Day, National Lobster Thermidor Day, Global Belly Laugh Day, National Talk Like A Grizzled Prospector Day, Tu BiShvat, Macintosh Computer Day, National Just Do It Day.


Burns Night, St Dwynwen’s Day.
National Florida Day, National Irish Coffee Day, National Opposite Day, National Fun At Work Day, Big Wig Day, Observe the Weather Day, A Room Of One’s Own Day, Mahayana New Year, Clashing Clothes Day, National Fish Taco Day, National IV Nurse Day.


National Spouses Day.
National Green Juice Day, National Peanut Brittle Day, Australia Day, National Fun at Work Day, National Preschool Health & Fitness Day, Indian Republic Day, Toad Hollow Day of Encouragement, International Customs Day.
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