Social mobility. Katharine Birbalsingh, Chair of the Social Mobility Commission, called in a major inaugural speech for a broader approach to improving social mobility, proposing using a range of data to help a wider group of people ‘left out,’ with a focus on priorities such as education, enterprise and employment. The Productivity Problem. The Institute for Fiscal Studies (IfS) discussed UK productivity issues with LSE Professor John Van Reenen who pointed to a lack of investment in infrastructure and political short-termism as among the reasons for such a problem in the UK, with improved R/D, education and skills, and institutional structure among the recommended solutions. Family Review. The Children’s Commissioner reported on the first roundtable held this week where integrated local services were among the topics discussed, and which are intended to help provide evidence for the government-commissioned review into contemporary family life.
New schools. The government announced plans to create a further 75 free schools as part of its next wave including SEND and Alternative Provision places and, more contentiously, ‘elite’ sixth forms. Stuck schools. The Education Policy Institute and IoE reported on their detailed research into schools ‘stuck’ on poor inspection ratings, indicating that such schools tend to face a ‘combination of unusually challenging circumstances,’ and that joining a MAT tends to offer limited benefits at secondary level only, calling for more to be done generally to understand and support such schools. Workforce profile. The government published new data on the school workforce in England showing a continuing increase in headcount including that of support staff, an increase in those joining as well as leaving, a predominantly female (75.5%) workforce and a more ethnically diverse one.
VQ trends. Ofqual reflected in a new blog on trends in vocational and technical qualifications, collected from data over the last ten years, noting the impact of factors such as the pandemic and government policies on the drop in actual certificates issued and pointing to a new interactive visualisation for users to interpret such data. Apprenticeship feedback. The Education and Skills Funding Agency (ESFA) announced the launch of a new feedback feature for apprentices enabling them to rate their training every three months using an anonymous response form. Cyber security. JISC launched a new survey to help gauge how well-prepared education and research institutions were for potential cyber-attacks with a summary report due for this autumn.
Minister’s address. Michelle Donelan, the universities minister addressed the HE Policy Institute (HEPI) annual conference where she outlined the investment the government was putting into the sector, highlighted the importance of delivering quality, stressed the need for flexible provision, and announced that Professor Edward Peck would become the first Student Support Champion. Funding cake. The Office for Students (OfS) confirmed how the government funding grant would be allocated for 2022/23 with £1,347m available as recurrent funding for priorities such as high-cost courses, nursing and healthcare courses and degree apprenticeships/L4/5 provision as well as to support Ukrainian students and £450m for biddable capital funding. Student survey. HEPI and AdvanceHE reported on their latest annual Student Academic Experience Survey pointing to a more positive feel from students this year following the pandemic years, with higher numbers of students reporting good value for money but with concerns about the cost of living and loneliness emerging.
MONDAY 13 JUNE On this day in 1721 England signed the Treaty of Madrid. On this day in 1842 on a journey from Slough to Paddington, Queen Victoria became the first British monarch to travel by train. On this day in 1864 the Hammersmith and City railway opened in London.
TUESDAY 14 JUNE On this day in 1381 during the Peasants’ Revolt, protesters presented King Richard II with a series of demands. On this day in 1645 the Royalists were defeated by Cromwell’s New Model Army at the Battle of Naseby in Northamptonshire. On this day in 1892 the surrender of the Argentine forces ended the Falklands conflict.
WEDNESDAY 15 JUNE On this day in 1215 King John set his seal on Magna Carta at Runnymede. On this day in 1825 the Duke of York laid the foundation stone of the new London Bridge. On this day in 1844 Charles Goodyear patented vulcanised rubber.
THURSDAY 16 JUNE On this day in 1567 Mary, Queen of Scots, was imprisoned in Lochleven Castle. On this day in 1784 Holland forbad the wearing of orange clothes. On this day in 1903 the Ford Motor Company was founded.
FRIDAY 17 JUNE On this day in 1579 Sir Francis Drake, on his way to becoming the first Englishman to circumnavigate the globe, claimed Nova Albion (California) on behalf of Queen Elizabeth 1. On this day in 1950 the first kidney transplant took place in Chicago. On this day in 1970 Edwin Land patented the Polaroid camera.
SATURDAY 18 JUNE On this day in 1583 the first life insurance policy, on the life of William Gybbons, was issued in London. On this day in 1815 the French were defeated at the Battle of Waterloo. On this day in 1885 the Statue of Liberty, a gift from France to the US, arrived in New York. SUNDAY 19 JUNE On this day in 936 Louis IV (Louis of Overseas) was crowned King of France. On this day in 1829 the Metropolitan Police Act received the royal assent, creating a new metropolitan police force that became known as Peelers or Bobbies. On this day in 1997 William Hague, at age 36, became the youngest leader of the Conservative Party in just over 200 years.
Awareness days from around the world
UK Smile Month, Step Up for 30 for Bowel Cancer, SANDS (Stillbirth and neonatal death) Awareness Month, National Candy Month, My Marathon, Age Without Apology Month.
INTERNATIONAL: Pride Month,Tourettes Awareness Month, Care for Your Grandparents Month, International Mud Month, Audiobook Month.
US: Guitars On The Beach Month, PTSD Awareness Month,Candy Month, Soul Food Month, Great Outdoors Month, Country Cooking Month, Dairy Month, Camping Month, Iced Tea Month.
THIS WEEK IS: London Tech Week (UK: 13 to 17 June), March for Men (UK: 11 to 19 June), Diabetes Awareness Week (UK: 13 to 19 June), BNF Healthy Eating Week (UK), Loneliness Awareness Week (UK), Meet a Mate Week (UK), Drowning Awareness Week (UK: 19 to 25 June), School Sport Week (UK: 19 to 25 June), Men's Health Week (International).
MONDAY JUNE 13 Sewing Machine Day (UK), World Softball Day (International), International Axe Throwing Day (International).
TUESDAY JUNE 14 World Blood Donor Day (International), International Bath Day (International), Flag Day (US), Cupcake Day (US), Bourbon Day (US), Call Your Doctor Day (US).
WEDNESDAY JUNE 15 Magna Carta Day (UK), Beer Day Britain (UK), Bug Busting Day (UK), Nature Photography Day (UK), World Elder Abuse Awareness Day (International), Lobster Day (US). Smile Power Day (US).
THURSDAY JUNE 16 Feast of Corpus Christi (Roman Catholic), Martyrdom of Guru Arjan Dev Sahib (Sikh), Clean Air Day (UK), Fresh Veggies Day (UK), World Tapas Day (International), World Tessellation Day (International), Rare Chromosome Awareness Day (international), World Refill Day (International, Fudge Day (US), Arborist Appreciation Day (US), Dump the Pump Day (US), Apple Strudel Day (US)
FRIDAY JUNE 17 Eat Your Vegetables Day (UK), World Bicycle Day (International), Global Garbage Man Day (International), Insect Repellent Awareness Day (International), World Cider Day (International), Donut Day (US), Chocolate Macaroon Day (US), Repeat Day (US), Chimborazo Day (US), Take Back the Lunch Break Day (US).
SATURDAY JUNE 18 Autistic Pride Day (International),Surfing Day (International) World Juggling Day (International), Picnic Day (International), Sushi Day (International), Go Fishing Day (US), Clean Your Aquarium Day (US), Splurge Day (US).
SUNDAY JUNE 19 Father's Day (UK), Wallace & Gromit's Wrong Trousers Day (UK), World Sickle Cell Day (International), World Sauntering Day (International), World Martini Day (International), Juneteenth (US), Garfield the Cat Day (US), Burghfield BoxKart Bash Day (US), Turkey Lovers Day (US).