Youth employment. PwC published the latest Youth Employment Index, compiled by the Youth Futures Foundation and PwC, showing the UK rising two places to 18thout of 38 OECD countries for youth employment prospects but with notable regional differences and poor levels of insecure and p/t employment for young people generally. Leave no child behind. UNESCO published a new report highlighting the global challenges around boys’ education with 132m boys of school age currently missing out on education and many struggling with disadvantage and disaffection, calling for a mix of improved access, investment, data and resources to help tackle the problem. Leaning loss. McKinsey examined the impact of the pandemic on global learning systems stressing the fact that the pandemic had exacerbated existing inequalities in the system and concluding that on average students globally are eight months behind where they should be but that this varies greatly by region.
Dear Education Secretary. The NAHT and ASCL wrote an open letter to the Education Secretary calling on him to reconsider the ‘premature’ scrapping of free Covid testing for staff and pupils and to abandon plans to publish performance tables for this year. Schools White Paper. The House of Commons Library Service provided a helpful summary of the Schools white paper released last week to a muted reception, with the briefing highlighting in particular the final push towards a full academy system, higher standards in English and maths, and a ‘richer, longer’ week, among other measures. Ongoing recovery: schools. Ofsted published a new report on post-pandemic education recovery in schools based on a recent sample of inspections and discussions, showing learning gaps closing in some cases albeit with maths, phonics and writing still causing concern, but pupil wellbeing and staff absences continuing to make life difficult for many schools.
FE & SKILLS
Skills Bills amendments. The Education Secretary wrote to members of the House of Lords as they considered the final amendments to the Skills Bill to reassure them about the continuing existence of many applied general qualifications such as BTECs as well as of the importance of the employer voice in appeals over such qualifications. The Future of Skills. The skills minister gave a major presentation to the Policy Exchange think tank on the subject of skills, running through current developments notably around the reform of qualifications, the importance of apprenticeships, the need for employer responsiveness and the forthcoming Unit for Future Skills. Capital funding. The government announced the latest list of FE colleges to benefit from the FE Capital Transformation Fund, set up two years ago to help upgrade FE facilities and estate and which will see a further £400m available for the 62 colleges listed. HIGHER EDUCATION
Quality focus. Michelle Donelan, the universities minister, wrote about how the government’s focus on quality was helping to drive up standards and drive down drop-outs in higher education. On reflection. Nicola Dandridge reflected on her time as chief executive of the OfS highlighting many of the challenges faced in setting up the Office for Students and the new ways of thinking it brought around the priorities of students, quality, access and value for money. Working with schools. The Office for Students (OfS) published a new briefing on how colleges and universities were working with schools to raise attainment as it discussed plans to tackle the issue, building on revised institutional access plans, enhanced partnerships and targeted data as ways forward.
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On this day in 1689 King William III and Queen Mary II were crowned as joint monarchs. On this day in 1814 Napoleon Bonaparte abdicated unconditionally and was exiled to the island of Elba in the Mediterranean. On this day in 1968 President Lyndon B Johnson signed the 1968 Civil Rights Act.
TUESDAY 12 APRIL
On this day in 1606 King James I adopted the Union Flag – incorporating the St George’s cross of England and the St Andrew’s cross of Scotland. It was replaced in 1801 by the current Union Flag, also known as the Union Jack. On this day in 1954 Bill Hayley and the Comets recorded Rock Around the Clock. On this day in 1980 US Olympic Committee endorsed a boycott of the Moscow Olympic games.
WEDNESDAY 13 APRIL
On this day in 1742 Handel’s Messiah received its world premiere in Dublin. On this day in 1829 King George IV gave the royal assent to the Catholic Emancipation Act, allowing Catholics to become MPs. On this day in 1919 hundreds of Indian nationalists were killed when British troops opened fire on a crowd in Amritsar.
THURSDAY 14 APRIL
On this day in 1865 President Abraham Lincoln was shot by John Wilkes Booth at Ford’s theatre, Washington DC, and died the next day. On this day in 1942 Malta received the George Cross for its defiance of the Axis Forces. On this day in 1988 Mikhail Gorbachev announced the phased withdrawal of Soviet troops from Afghanistan.
FRIDAY 15 APRIL
On this day in 1755 Samuel Johnson’s Dictionary of the English Language was published. On this day in 1802 Dorothy Wordsworth recorded in her diary a walk with her brother William, on which she remarked she “never saw daffodils so beautiful”. On this day in 1912 the White Star liner Titanic struck an iceberg and sank with the loss of more than 1,500 lives.
SATURDAY 16 APRIL
On this day in 1947 the phrase ‘Cold War’ was coined in a speech delivered by the US statesman Bernard Baruch. On this day in 1953 the Royal Yacht Britannia was launched. On this day in 1964 jail sentences totalling 307 years were given to 12 men for their part in the Great Train Robbery.
SUNDAY 17 APRIL
On this day in 1397 Geoffrey Chaucer read The Canterbury Tales for the first time at the court of King Richard II. On this day in 1951 the Peak District became the first national park in Britain. On this day in 1986 the British journalist John McCarthy was kidnapped in Beirut.
World Parkinson’s Day (International), Pet Day (US), Barbershop Quartet Day (US), Submarine Day (US), Cheese Fondue Day (US).
TUESDAY APRIL 12
Be Kind to Lawyers Day (International), World Hamster Day (International), Education and Sharing Day (US), Equal Pay Day (US), Grilled Cheese Sandwich Day (US), Deskfast Day (US), Licorice Day (US), Walk on Your Wild Side Day (US).
WEDNESDAY APRIL 13
FND Awareness Day (International), Day of Pink (International), Scrabble Day (US), Thomas Jefferson Day (US).
THURSDAY APRIL 14
Maundy Thursday (International), Vaisakhi, Dolphin Day (US), Look up at the Sky Day (US).
FRIDAY APRIL 15
Good Friday (International), Start of Passover (International), Mahavir Jayanti, Microvolunteering Day (International), World Art Day (International), That Sucks Day (US), ASL Day (US), Take a Wild Guess Day (US), Anime Day (US).
SATURDAY APRIL 16
Easter Saturday/Lazarus Saturday (International), Husband Appreciation Day (US), Wear Your Pyjamas to Work Day (US), Auctioneers Day (US), Save the Elephant Day (US), Record Store Day (US), Eggs Benedict Day (US).
SUNDAY APRIL 17
Malbec Day (UK), Easter Sunday (International), Bat Appreciation Day (International), World Hemophilia Day (International), Haiku Poetry Day (International), Blah Blah Blah Day (US), Kickball Day (US), Cheeseball Day (US), Ford Mustang Day.