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What does the Educational Excellence Everywhere White Paper mean for you?

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The DfE have issued a government white paper entitled Educational Excellence Everywhere. The proposals it outlines have the potential to impact directly on most of England’s schools. So what does the white paper mean for you?

Along with the widely publicised decision to fully academise all schools by 2022, the white paper also outlines changes to teacher accreditation, alterations to the inspection programme for under-performing schools and a renewed focus on leadership excellence.

The headlines

  1. Recognition of the teaching recruitment crisis.
  2. Qualified Teacher Status will be replaced with a “stronger accreditation”.
  3. A renewed focus on high-quality, evidence-based teaching resources.
  4. Pupil premium is set to continue.
  5. Under-performing schools will not be revisited by Ofsted for 30 months.
  6. A Parent Portal will be set up to help parents navigate the school system.
  7. New National funding formulae will be introduced.
  8. All schools to become academies by 2022.
  9. Further reforms to assessments and curricula are planned.

Educational Excellence Everywhere

  1. Recruitment
  2. Teacher accreditation
  3. Teaching materials and resources.
  4. Leadership
  5. A school-led system


Recruitment

  • The white paper recognises that recruiting teachers is becoming increasingly difficult: “as the economy grows stronger, competition for the best graduates and career changers increases and we face smaller pools of graduates from which to recruit in key subjects”.
  • The white paper therefore introduces various reforms that aim to empower more school leaders to make their own decisions about who to employ and how much to pay them.
  • Changes to Ofsted inspections for under-performing schools will remove the disincentives that dissuade the best teachers from working in the most challenging schools.
  • The National College for Teaching and Leadership will be reformed to reduce the cost of recruitment in schools.
  • New, simple web tools will allow schools to advertise vacancies for free on a new national teacher vacancy website.

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Teacher accreditation

  • Qualified Teacher Status will be replaced by “a stronger, more challenging accreditation based on a teacher’s effectiveness in the classroom”.
  • The accreditation will be awarded when teachers demonstrate “classroom proficiency”, which will be judged in terms of subject knowledge and behaviour-management.
  • The accreditation will be awarded by headteachers and will give them more flexibility to bring in experts from outside the teaching sector – “for example, a talented musician or coder”.
  • The new National Teaching Service will be developed to “help ensure the best teachers and middle leaders work in the most challenging areas”.
  • A new Standard for Teachers’ Professional Development will be introduced with the aim of improving the quality of CPD in schools.
  • An investigation will be launched into the feasibility of paying teachers to publish their research and CPD on an “open-source” basis.

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Teaching materials and resources

  • The white paper makes a commitment to ensuring that “there is a sufficient supply of high-quality CPD provision and that teachers have greater access to high quality teaching materials to improve workload and effectiveness”.
  • The allocation of Initial Teacher Training (ITT) places will be reformed to improve quality. The proportion of ITT offered by the best and most up-to-date schools will be increased.
  • A new peer-reviewed British education journal will be set up to increase teachers’ access to high-quality professional development and evidence.
  • New National funding formulae will be introduced. The intention behind these reforms is to create a system in which funding reflects “the circumstances of children and local costs – weighting funding by the level of challenge, not arbitrary historical factors .” The proposal “asks the most generously funded to support their less-generously funded peers”.
  • Pupil premium is set to be continued.

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Leadership

  • The academisation of schools will be complemented by the establishment of more Multi-Academy Trusts (MATs) and teaching school alliances. The aim is to offer “many more senior roles and rapid progression opportunities, ensuring the best leaders can play new, more influential roles across more schools”.
  • A new “gold standard” of voluntary National Professional Qualifications will be designed for each level of leadership. Leading headteachers, MAT CEOs and other experts will be consulted on these.
  • An improvement period will be introduced for under-performing schools so that they will not be re-inspected for 30 months. When a poorly performing maintained school is replaced by a sponsored academy, a new school opens or a new sponsor is brought into an academy, the school will not be re-inspected by Ofsted until its third year. This “breathing space” is designed to encourage leaders to take on the challenge of working in the schools where they are most needed.
  • A new National Teaching Service will be introduced to “support strong middle leaders to move to work in some of the nation’s most challenging areas”.
  • A new Excellence in Leadership fund will be set up to help develop leaders where they are needed.

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A school-led system

  • “By the end of 2020, all remaining maintained schools will be academies or in the process of conversion.” The process will be completed by 2022.
  • As more schools become academies and fall under the governance of MATs, “the best governing boards will assume responsibility for more schools, and the weakest boards will be removed through sharper accountability”.
  • The free school programme will be extended to include at least 500 new schools by 2020.
  • To support these changes, a new Parent Portal will be set up as a “one-stop shop” for parents seeking information about changes to the school system.
  • New performance tables for MATs will be introduced. Ofsted will also consult on removing the separate graded judgments on teaching, learning and assessment to put the focus of inspection on outcomes.

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High expectations

  • A “world-leading” curriculum will be introduced as a “benchmark” for academies to “use and build on”.
  • National assessments and qualifications will continue to be reformed. A heavier focus will be placed on the English Baccalaureate (EBacc).
  • Character and resilience will be key to children’s success. Funding will be made available to support this and to allow 25% of secondary schools to extend the school day. The National Citizen Service will also be expanded to support this.

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Read the Educational Excellence Everywhere white paper in full her.

All extracts taken from Educational Excellence Everywhere presented to Parliament by the Secretary of State for Education by Command of Her Majesty. © Crown Copyright 2016. Reproduced under the terms of the Open Government Licence v3.0.


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