Latest in Cassidy's Comments: A Former Head's Views on Current Educational Issues

Cassidy's Comments: A Former Head's Views on Current Educational Issues

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Do We Still Need Examination Results to Prove We Are Successful?

Posted in: Cassidy's Comments on 15/09/2022 As results season swings into gear in schools across Northern Ireland we celebrate with the successful pupils and try to reassure and console those who have not done as well as they needed to. Apart from the exceptional cases where teachers are shocked by unexpected failures by pupils or surprised ...

How can schools help with the cost of living crisis?

Posted in: Cassidy's Comments on 16/06/2022 In a joint letter, sent to Chancellor Rishi Sunak and Education Secretary Nadhim Zahawi by education unions representing one million school staff in England, it has been said that vulnerable children not receiving free school meals were facing a "real barrier to learning". They have called for al...

Daydream Believer - Does Success Really Demand Total Concentration in School?

Posted in: Cassidy's Comments on 26/05/2022 Research just published by Professor Teresa McCormack, Dr Agnieszka Graham and Jessica Cherry from QUB has said that daydreaming "can be reliably measured in children and is of educational significance". Their research carried out by the School of Psychology involved 97 children aged six to 11 year...

School Budgets and Energy Bills – A Looming Crisis

Posted in: Cassidy's Comments on 21/04/2022 As we come to terms with the harsh new realities of the higher cost of living and the effect on our household budgets, spare a thought for school leaders who must grapple with similar pressures on a much bigger scale. The Association of School and College Leaders Business Leadership Specialist Hayl...

School Starting Age in Northern Ireland – Are We Out of Step with Best Practice Elsewhere?

Posted in: Cassidy's Comments on 15/03/2022 A bill which will allow parents more flexibility in deciding when their child starts school has been passed by the Northern Ireland Assembly. This follows a long campaign and subsequent consultation by The Department of Education which showed high levels of support for more flexibility in the schoo...

Where Would We Be Without Exams? New Arrangements for 2022 and Beyond

Posted in: Cassidy's Comments on 18/02/2022 The Chief Regulator of Ofqual, Dr Jo Saxton writing to school leaders on February 3rd, outlined her approach to how A Level and GCSE examinations should precede as we begin a third year of disrupted education for our young people. “It’s very clear to me that dealing with the impact of the pandemic ...

Should Discipline in our Schools be Stricter?

Posted in: Cassidy's Comments on 19/01/2022 During an interview on ITV’s flagship Good Morning show on January 10th Katharine Birbalsingh, Principal and founder of Michaela Community free school in North London defended her school’s very strict approach to discipline and called for parents to be more involved in pupil learning. She has face...

Social Media Abuse of School Staff by Pupils

Posted in: Cassidy's Comments on 13/12/2021 Recent news reports have revealed that schools across Northern Ireland have been targeted by bogus TikTok accounts in which pupils rate their teachers. Incidents have occurred where fake TikTok accounts for local schools were set up and then images posted of school staff with inappropriate comments...

Are School Uniforms Beyond their Sell-By-Date?

Posted in: Cassidy's Comments on 22/11/2021 The Children’s Society has reignited a debate about the value and role of school uniforms, as new statutory guidance is published by the Department for Education. These new directives will instruct schools in England to ensure their uniform is affordable. They will be expected to have taken steps t...

Are Our Schools Ready for a Post-Covid World?

Posted in: Cassidy's Comments on 18/10/2021 A report has recently been published by UNESCO’s International Commission on the Futures of Education, entitled “Nine ideas for public action”. It adds a much needed global view to our local struggles with the pandemic as we run the risk of just trying to recover our previous normality in schools r...
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