Firstly, there was the Labour Party Conference, where the Shadow Secretary of State said that she would ‘turn her back’ on Michael Gove’s reforms. She followed up on this by promising to bring an end to the free school programme in the event of gaining power. While obviously alarming to advocates of the programme, this is consistent with the Labour Party’s previous attitude towards the policy and isn’t a new development.
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Free Schools in the media
Two year 8 pupils at the East London Science School conducted an on camera post-match interview with two players from Great Britain Men’s Hockey Team after an international match. The pupils were invited onto the pitch at the Lee Valley Hockey Centre for a once in life time opportunity to meet their sporting idols. They asked questions about their nutrition and other sports they enjoyed.
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The announcement follows strong support from the Prime Minister, who last week confirmed the Government would build more free schools in a bid to ensure every child has access to a good school.
Free Schools in the media
Students at East London Science School were approached by the astronaut Tim Peake at a stall they were running at New Scientist Live . They demonstrated their remote-control robotic elephant and showed him how to make ice cream using liquid nitrogen. Monika Patel, head of physics at the school, said: ‘Tim Peake is a real inspiration to our pupils, and others across Britain, so it was fantastic that he came to watch our demonstrations and talk with pupils.’
I'm going to start off with a confession, which is normally when I introduce myself I explain that I was a maths teacher for 16 years – but I have a dirty secret, which is I didn't do a maths degree, I actually did economics.
In her speech at the Conservative Party Conference, Theresa May stated that the Government would build more free schools to raise standards and improve parental choice. In addition, Damian Hinds confirmed continued investment in free schools.
The announcement follows last week’s provisional Key Stage One and Phonics results which showed free schools were once again the highest performers at these stages. Last year, free schools were also the top performing type of school at GCSE and had the highest proportion of students gaining AAB at A-Level across the state-funded sector.
At a Labour Party conference fringe event this week, Angela Rayner said that she would “turn her back” on Michael Gove’s education reforms. While this rhetoric will certainly play well with her party’s membership, I want a lot more detail on how she would actually implement changes.