Landmarks in law: the case that shone a spotlight on domestic violence

Forty years ago, a jury found Kiranjit Ahluwalia guilty of murdering her husband. Her subsequent appeal changed the way that the concept of “provocation” was applied, and helped shift the attitude of English courts and the public on the impact of domestic violence on women who kill. It led to the later freeing of two […]

Top engineering university to open jobs exclusively to women

Job vacancies at one of Europe’s leading engineering universities will be open exclusively to female candidates for at least the next 18 months in order to overcome the institution’s “implicit gender bias”. The rector of the Eindhoven University of Technology, Frank Baaijens, said progress towards a better balance of men and women in academic roles […]

Philip Hammond 'considered quitting over Theresa May spending plans'

Philip Hammond is so frustrated by Theresa May’s plans to spend billions of pounds on projects to shore up her legacy that he considered resigning, according to government sources. The chancellor is unhappy with the prime minister’s decision to set out plans to spend up to £27bn on education over three years, including building new […]

School Diversity Week founder: ‘I don’t recall a single teacher using the word gay’

The first mention Tim Ramsey ever heard at school of homosexuality was negative, he remembers. “I was in a year 5 lesson and we were looking at the life of a composer. And one of the boys on my table said, this guy is gay. He’s a faggot.” Ramsey already knew that he was gay, […]

You’ve set up a successful school. What next? Start a university, of course

Ed Fidoe, co-founder of School 21, an “outstanding” free school in east London, has spotted a problem. To solve it, he’s opening a university. It all began in 2012 when he, together with Tony Blair’s former aide Peter Hyman, opened School 21 to give pupils “superpower” communication skills, prompting a glowing Ofsted report two years […]

North-South divide in education is ‘too simplistic’ as poorer children do better in big cities across country, minister says

The argument of a North-South divide in education is too “simplistic” as poorer children in cities across England often do better than their peers in non-urban areas, the education secretary has said. Some of the “finest” schools and strongest education attainment is found in the north of England while some areas in the south are […]

Did you solve it? Are you in the smartest 1 per cent (of 13-year-olds)?

Earlier today I set you the following puzzles: 1. In this word-sum, each letter stands for one of the digits 0–9, and stands for the same digit each time it appears. Different letters stand for different digits. No number starts with 0. Find all the possible solutions of the word-sum shown above. Solution To find […]

Nicholas Sparks defends diversity record at school after emails leak

Bestselling romantic novelist Nicholas Sparks has rejected claims that he fostered an anti-LGBT environment at a school that he co-founded, after emails between him and a former headmaster were leaked to the Daily Beast. The author of The Notebook and A Walk to Remember co-founded the Epiphany School of Global Studies in North Carolina in […]

Damian Hinds: home shapes a child's future more than school

Children’s home environments have a bigger effect on social mobility than being born into low-income backgrounds or attending underperforming schools, the education secretary has said. Damian Hinds described the issue as “the last taboo in public policy”, and added that “what parents do is actually more important than who your parents are” in an unscripted […]

Can you solve it? Are you in the smartest 1 per cent (of 13-year-olds)?

Today you are pitting yourselves against the best 13-year-old mathematicians in the UK. The questions below are taken from last week’s Junior Mathematical Olympiad, a competition aimed at children up to Year 8 (in England) who score in roughly the top half per cent of mathematical ability. The competition is a two hour paper, split […]

David Lammy says England is failing those who don't go to university

England’s education system is failing young people who don’t go to university because there are too few quality routes for vocational education, says David Lammy, a Labour MP. “If you are academic, [England] is still one of the best countries in which to be born, particularly if you’re born into a middle-class family and your […]

Children with links to social services are two grades behind at GCSE, report suggests

Children who have had contact with a social worker at any time since the age of nine are around two grades behind at GCSE, a government review suggests. The average classroom has three children who have needed support from social services at some point in last six years – a total of 1.6m children across England, […]

May I have a word about… the intriguing profession of cryptozoology | Jonathan Bouquet

I well remember my school careers adviser shaking his head and saying that I was fit only for the armed forces or the police, which rather demeans these noble professions. Shame he didn’t show more imagination and suggest that I become a cryptozoologist, a calling I only came across last week. Dr Darren Naish, a […]

‘Outstanding’ Jewish school downgraded over religious and gender segregation concerns

A Jewish school has been downgraded from the top to bottom Ofsted grade over concerns that it segregates some of its pupils based on faith and gender. The King David High School in Manchester, an academy which was deemed to be “outstanding” in 2015, has now been judged as “inadequate” after a reinspection by the […]

What Cambridge University taught us about racism

CChelsea Kwakye and Ore Ogunbiyi are the co-authors of Taking Up Space: The Black Girl’s Manifesto for Change, the second title from #Merky Books, a partnership between Penguin and grime star Stormzy, who has also announced he is funding two Cambridge scholarships for black students in the UK. The book explores the lack of diversity […]

A-level maths paper leaked online before exam

An investigation has been launched after an A-level maths paper was circulated online before the exam. Images of the test paper by Edexcel appeared on social media on Thursday afternoon. The exam board’s parent company, Pearson, said the images “were circulated in a very limited way” before students sat the exam on Friday. “Having visited […]

Forcing children to work in break time is violation of their rights, psychologists say

Punishing children with break time detentions is a violation of their rights, psychologists have said.   Schools should not force pupils to work through their free time as play is critical for their wellbeing and development, according to the British Psychological Society. The society’s educational and child psychology division said it was “concerned” by the diminishing opportunities for […]

Nations must protect spending on the vulnerable, says IMF chief

The International Monetary Fund is urging countries to protect spending on health, education and vulnerable groups amid growing concern among its members about excessive levels of inequality, its managing director has said. Announcing the change of approach in an interview with the Guardian, Christine Lagarde said it was now politically incorrect to argue against the […]

The Trump administration is waging a quiet war on education | Ross Barkan

Perhaps nothing illustrates the perverse nature of Donald Trump’s administration better than his approach to the regulatory state. In Trump’s America, those most zealously dedicated to unraveling federal oversight are in charge of the government, racing to shred laws as quickly as they can. Although it rarely draws the outrage of his latest unhinged tweet […]

Another Etonian leader? Time for Labour to challenge the might of private schools | Robert Verkaik

Not since Harold Wilson’s government set up a commission to deal with the “public school problem” has the Palace of Westminster hosted an event that could bring about the dismantling of Britain’s educational apartheid. But MPs this week held a debate on a programme for radical reform of a two-tier system that provides an elite […]

Britain’s strictest school to open second free school after government backing

A controversial free school dubbed “the strictest in the country” will open a new school after securing government approval. The new Michaela Community School, renowned for its “no excuses” behaviour policy, is one of 22 free schools given the green light in a bid to create thousands more places. The secondary school in Stevenage will follow […]

More than four in five ‘outstanding’ schools lose top grade after reinspection

Only one in six “outstanding” schools have kept their top grade after a reinspection from Ofsted. The chief inspector has called on the government to remove a policy which exempts schools rated “outstanding” from routine inspection, amid concerns parents lack confidence in the grades. It comes after figures from the watchdog show that 84 per cent of […]

Jessica Biel denies she is an anti-vaxxer after opposing California vaccination law

Jessica Biel denied suggestions she was a supporter of the anti-vaccination movement after spending the day lobbying lawmakers in the US with advocate Robert F Kennedy Jr. After news emerged of her opposition to a vaccine bill which seeks to limit medical exemptions in California and make it more difficult for parents to bypass the […]

Fifth of pupils in England miss out on first choice of secondary

The proportion of students getting into their first choice secondary school has dropped to its lowest level for a decade as pupil numbers surge, official figures show. The statistics show the pressure on primaries has started to shift to secondaries. Since 2013, when secondary applications were at their lowest, there has been a 20.9% increase […]

My Catholic, trans child is living proof of how wrong the Vatican is on gender | Anonymous

The recent document from the Vatican’s Congregation for Catholic Education talks of an “educational crisis”, and alleges that discussions in relation to gender have “helped to destabilise the family as an institution”. As the parent of a trans child, I find this hugely disappointing. I have two teenage daughters. Their dad is Catholic, and they’ve […]

One in five pupils denied first choice secondary school, new figures show

Nearly one in five children did not get their first choice of secondary school this year, figures show. The proportion of children being denied their preferred secondary school has reached a 10-year high, the Department for Education statistics reveal. Figures show that 80.9 per cent of secondary school applicants received an offer from their first […]

Girls less likely to say they are clever despite better exam results, study finds

Girls are much less likely to say they are clever than boys even though they do significantly better in exams, according to a new study. Female pupils are more likely to say they do not know the meanings of words, to feel less confident when faced with new work and to doubt that they are […]

University students more anxious amid increased assignments and challenging courses, survey suggests

Levels of anxiety among university students are rising because of an increased number of assignments and a feeling that courses are too challenging, according to a new poll of more than 14,000 undergraduates. More than two in three students believe universities should tell parents or guardians if they are worried about their mental health issues “under extreme […]

Teachers to strike at Essex school facing conversion to academy

Teachers at a school which has been at the centre of a parent-led campaign against plans to hand it to an academy trust are to hold four days of strikes beginning next week. Industrial action at Waltham Holy Cross primary in Waltham Abbey, Essex, was announced as it emerged that the incoming trust, NET Academies, […]

Cash strapped school asks BBC Children in Need for help

Downshall Primary School has been forced to ask the charity for help (Picture: Getty Images)A struggling school has resorted to asking BBC Children in Need to support disadvantaged pupils. Downshall Primary School in Illford, east London has been forced to axe staff due to its squeezed budget. MPs have said it’s ‘shameful’ and ‘shocking’ that […]