pedagogy · Policy · Powerful knowledge · Progressivism

On the sacred and profane of powerful knowledge

Introduction School’s minister, Nick Gibb, frequently talks about the national curriculum in terms of a canon. In ancient Greek, a canon referred to a measuring rod, which could offer a symbolic description of the current education system.  The canon of the medieval education system was the gospels; the trivium introduced the medieval elite to the word of… Continue reading On the sacred and profane of powerful knowledge

pedagogy

On episodic and semantic memory: a caution against a prosaic curriculum

I thought it might be it might be useful to share the following four research papers on episodic and semantic memory: 1. Interaction between episodic and semantic memory networks in the acquisition and consolidation of novel spoken words, 2. How do episodic and semantic memory contribute to episodic foresight in young children? 3. Hippocampal Activation during Episodic and… Continue reading On episodic and semantic memory: a caution against a prosaic curriculum

Ofsted · Policy

Ofsted must have this confrontation with the DfE

A recent article in the Times Educational Supplement (TES) entitled DfE and Ofsted at odds over exams caught my attention. The article suggests that the DfE has taken umbrage at the decision by “Ofsted (is) to downgrade the use of exam results as a measure of school quality”. There is an escalating confrontation between the DfE and… Continue reading Ofsted must have this confrontation with the DfE

pedagogy · Progressivism

An argument for discovery learning in early years classrooms

In this blog, I intend to address the issue of discovery learning. Critics have claimed that discovery learning has been the dominant ideology in education for much of the past 50 years. Some consider it to be the cause of many of the problems suffered by education during that period. I want to address the… Continue reading An argument for discovery learning in early years classrooms

Ofsted · Policy

On Post-2010 policy: lurking behind the veil of Ofsted data is a litany of policy related issues

In my last blog, I argued that the recent National Audit Office (NAO) report about Ofsted asked the wrong question: does Ofsted measure the impact its inspections have on improving the quality of schools in England? As HMCI observed, there is a perverse incentive implicit to Ofsted measuring the impact of its own inspections. Ofsted could simply inflate grades… Continue reading On Post-2010 policy: lurking behind the veil of Ofsted data is a litany of policy related issues

Ofsted · Policy

On the National Audit Office (NAO) report into Ofsted: insightful but critically flawed on school improvement

The National Audit Office recently released a report entitled Ofsted’s inspection of schools. The report examines whether the Office for Standards in Education, Children’s Services and Skills’ (Ofsted)  school inspections provide value for money. The report is insightful and a good starting point for a debate about Ofsted, however, it is also critically flawed on school improvement. This blog aims to… Continue reading On the National Audit Office (NAO) report into Ofsted: insightful but critically flawed on school improvement

Ofsted · Policy

On OFSTED’s early years report: some dos and don’ts for Professor Mujis to consider

OFSTED has recently appointed a new head of research. Judging by the recently launched early years report: Bold beginnings:  the Reception curriculum in a sample of good and outstanding primary schools this appointment has not come too soon. The report has been criticised by educationalists for being politicised and ideological. In this BLOG I highlight some dos and don’ts… Continue reading On OFSTED’s early years report: some dos and don’ts for Professor Mujis to consider