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Secondary Education

Dealing With SEMH Issues in the Classroom

Social, Emotional, and Mental Health (SEMH) issues have become the proverbial elephant in the classroom, and are now recognised in the 2014 SEND Code of Practice. It’s vitally important to notice these issues as they develop in children and to take action, as it can affect their education, future life prospects, and how they develop relationships and attitudes as they grow older. Often, SEMH issues stem from other, concealed issues, whether these be problems at home, depression, anxiety at school, or disorders such as ADHD. Whatever the catalyst for this trend – social media, societal change, increasing academic pressure, or improved diagnosis –...

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Supporting GCSE and BTEC Students Through Examination Stress

We spend so much time focusing on the outcome of examinations and students’ results, it’s easy to forget about the impact this is having on their mental health. In this country, 80% of young people believe that exam pressure has significantly impacted on their mental health. When you consider that three quarters of long-term mental health issues start in childhood, that’s indicative of a huge problem facing today’s youth. Recent and ongoing reforms to GCSE examinations are compounding the issue, and many pupils feel they are left in limbo by the confusion this has caused. Unfortunately, it looks like the situation...

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NAO STEM Report findings

A recent report by the National Audit Office (NAO) – Delivering STEM skills for the economy – has outlined a number of concerns with how STEM education funding and strategy is being conducted. Here are their major findings: A large sum of funding – £67m – allocated towards recruiting 2,500 new teachers and improving the skill set of 15,000 non-specialists is having a positive impact. However, the return to teaching pilot only managed to entice around 400 teachers back to the role, out of a target of 810. On the subject of female underrepresentation in STEM-based subjects, girls make up only a...

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The Growth Mindset in Education

“I can’t do it”. Sometimes, this pessimistic four-word mantra can be difficult to brush aside. It’s all too easy to believe that the 5k run you foolishly agreed to, the 50,000 word writing challenge you signed up for on a whimsy, or even an average Thursday morning lesson with the class from hell are insurmountable obstacles, designed to waste your time and embarrass your ego. In many cases, this might be true. You can’t possibly run that far, or for that long. Yet. I can’t do it yet....

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5 Timeless Exam Tips That Will Always Be Relevant

Exam season is well and truly underway, so while revision tips and exam techniques are probably already outdated for this term, it's still a good time to review the support that is extended to pupils that will be sitting exams in the future. No matter the level or subject, there are some strong foundation-level tips that remain timeless; perhaps these tips would translate well into a planner page for a year 11 planner? We've highlighted five....

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The Mercurial State of Computing Education

Back in the day, I elected to study Computing (then called ICT) at AS-Level. Bright-eyed and expectant, I rolled up to my Sixth Form on the first day of term, ready to learn about programming, website design, and the mysteries of binary machine code. I had already learned to touch-type from my frantic late-night chatting sessions on MSN Messenger (an Instant Messenger application popular in the 2000s), so I felt like I had a good grounding in the subject....

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The Impact of GCSE Reform

There’s a widespread belief that education has been becoming more “soft” over the years, and that the O Level represented a golden standard of British education that has since been lost. GCSE pass rates have been going up for the past few years, but whether this could be interpreted as evidence of improvement is debatable – to many, this represents a fall in standards....

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