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Opinion / Education

Education system is failing to help all children prosper

By Howard Williamson |

16 August 2016

There is a great deal of discussion about intergenerational relationships, generational (lack of) transfer of resources, and the penalties and price the younger generation is paying and will continue to pay for the benefits and indulgences of the "golden" post-war generation that is now in or approaching retirement.

Usually during the summer while schools are on holiday, public life tends to go into warm-weather hibernation.

The new broom that has swept through Westminster over the past week presents an opportunity for much-needed changes to education policy.

Our young people should be able to ‘Re-mixit' in Europe

By Howard Williamson |

21 June 2016

Soon this pantomime of half-truths, distortions and downright lies will be over.

During my professional career, I have from time to time found myself newly responsible for an unfamiliar area of work. It's always seemed sensible to me to start by talking to expert colleagues, and to read around the subject to gain a general understanding. That process has always included going back to the original source material and reading the underlying legislation. I have on my bookshelf a variety of Acts of Parliament with post-it notes showing the evolution of my ignorance into some degree of knowledge on topics as varied as school admissions and inspections.

Every now and then, I think about writing a satirical column on education, but before I get round to it, the world has proved that my most extreme ideas are too tame.

As titles for white papers go, Educational Excellence Everywhere is certainly brimming with optimism.

One of the more effective school improvement strategies of the last five years has been the threat of forced academisation.