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Tes 28 May 2021

Tes is dedicated to supporting the world’s teachers. Our mission is to enable great teaching by helping educators find the tools and technology they need to excel, supporting them throughout their career and professional development.

United Kingdom
Tes Global Ltd
51 Issues

in this issue

3 min

I have never been a fan of reducing complex data to a graph. I look at most graphs in the same way that I look at Magic Eye prints: I squint at them for some time, pushing them towards and away from my face at random intervals, until I eventually give in. I can see nothing. The marks on the page are not furthering my understanding and bringing clarity; they are giving me a migraine. Unfortunately for me, in editing this week’s cover feature, I was faced with a large number of graphs. John Morgan was set the task of pinning down the value of education by looking through decades of research. He emerged holding a number of graphs that all point to the same conclusion: more time in education makes…

2 min
why we should heed this early years expert’s ode to joy

If there was fun to be had, Professor David Whitebread was never far away. The University of Cambridge academic passed away last month, prompting a trail of joyful anecdotes about his love of education and a celebration of his research portfolio, which is treasured by early years professionals. Whitebread was a world expert in the use of play in education and its role in the development of self-regulation – one of the key building blocks of learning. Back in 2019, he told Tes that self-regulation was something that had to be – and could be – taught. “The exciting thing from an educational perspective is that, although some children seem to be born with the ability – have a metacognitive disposition towards self-regulation – it is teachable,” he explained. “Once you understand…

3 min
the confusion around teaching assistants’ role is addressed – again

Rob Webster is used to correcting misunderstandings about the role of teaching assistants (TAs). The associate professor at the Centre for Inclusive Education at UCL Institute of Education has spent most of his career doing it, with his pioneering research in this area assisting schools throughout the UK. He probably didn’t expect Ofsted to be causing him so many headaches, though. The recent Ofsted report on supporting special educational needs and disability (SEND) included a section pointing out that pupils with SEND regularly spend time out of the class, working with teaching assistants. As a result, the inspectorate had lots of concerns about social exclusion – some children were missing large chunks of the curriculum and it was felt that the curriculum that they were offered didn’t have the same ambition as…

2 min
avoid that sinking feeling: put your own mask on first

Tales of travel and exploration anecdotally offer two contrasting models of leadership. There is the “Titanic model”, in which the captain is the last to leave the ship. Then there is the “aviation model”, where we are reminded to “put on your own oxygen mask first before helping others”. Both offer important insights: being a leader is about supporting others, especially in a crisis. But as the aviators acknowledge, this is only possible if leaders overcome their selfless instincts and are in sufficient physical and mental good health to help others. So, how can leaders look after themselves while handling a crisis? Physical health is an important component in maintaining strong mental and emotional health, and its foundations are good diet, exercise and sleep. It is vital to find time for these basics. I have…

5 min
will the new wellbeing charter really mean less stress for teachers?

Wellbeing is a big topic in education right now – understandably so, given the past year and the toll it has taken on staff in all roles in schools and colleges. This is perhaps why the Department for Education chose 2021’s Mental Health Awareness Week to unveil a new Education Staff Wellbeing Charter that sets out commitments for ensuring the “wellbeing and mental health of everyone working in education”. For schools and colleges, the idea is that you can sign up to the charter and its 11 commitments to support staff wellbeing and mental health. The DfE has even provided snazzy posters to download and pin up. What’s perhaps more intriguing, though, is the fact that the DfE itself and Ofsted have also created wellbeing guidelines by which they will operate and,…

7 min
10 questions with… shappi khorsandi

Shappi Khorsandi is a comedian and writer who regularly hosts sell-out tours across the UK. She has also appeared on numerous TV and radio panel shows, and is the author of two books, Nina is Not OK and A Beginner’s Guide to Acting English, the latter covering much of her time at school. She chatted to Tes about her school days, describing what an important role her primary played in helping her and her family settle in the country after they had to flee Iran because of the revolution. In particular, she explains how a series of great teachers helped guide her through the educational maze and made a lasting impression on her – including achieving an A in A-level English – something she still considers one of her greatest triumphs. 1. Where…