Education & Arts Blogs

First Fruits of Education Reform

First Fruits of Education Reform

The UK should feel deservedly pleased with the results of this week’s PISA rankings. Since the last rankings three years ago, it has risen from 22nd to 14th in reading, from 15th to 14th in science and from 27th to 18th in maths. The last is a particular achievement, with the UK improving nine score points over the last three years, one of only a handful of countries to secure a statistically significant increase. The gender gap and rich-poor attainment gap in the UK is also narrower in both cases than the OECD average.

The Chancellor should refuse new funding for schools

The Chancellor should refuse new funding for schools

The Chancellor should not give in to the temptation to “give what amounts to protection money to the union lobby” and increase school funding in next week’s Budget, argues Policy Exchange’s Head of Education and Social Reform John Blake in the Times. “We can have world-leading schools without breaking the bank, but not if our school system believes there will always be more money whatever happens.”

Spielman is right to move Ofsted’s focus onto curriculum – but can the school system step up?

Spielman is right to move Ofsted’s focus onto curriculum – but can the school system step up?

Policy Exchange’s Head of Education welcomes Ofsted’s Chief Inspector Amanda Spielman’s powerful statement about the quality and content of the school curriculum in England. Ofsted says there is too little discussion of curriculum planning and too few teachers and school leaders understand what this means. With a decade’s teaching experience, including as a curriculum creator for one of England’s most successful school trusts, John Blake argues in the TES that schools need to look to Britain’s cultural institutions to find the support they need.

Nicky Morgan on character education

Nicky Morgan on character education

Policy Exchange hosted the launch of “Taught Not Caught”, Nicky Morgan’s new book on the necessity of character education in our schools. John Blake – Policy Exchange Head of Education and Social Reform – explains how Morgan makes a powerful case for ensuring that our children are raised at school with the values we want and know that they will need.

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We know what works: high standards, good discipline & a knowledge-rich curriculum, combined with strong accountability and proper support for teachers. Whoever takes office on 13th December would do well to strengthen & deepen the last decade’s reforms. policyexchange.org.u…