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   LKMco Christmas Newsletter

It’s been an incredibly packed few months since we last updated you on what we’ve been up to at LKMco. We’ve launched three reports in parliament, hosted two brilliant events at the Ship and have welcomed two new members of staff. We hope you enjoy our festive December 2015 newsletter!

Piratical debate

We kicked off in September with a fantastic LKMco-Policy First education debate at the Ship with a panel comprising  Katherine Birbalsingh, Jonathan Clifton, Natasha Porter, Peter Henderson and Jake Curtis chaired by our director Loic.  The debate tackled the challenges facing our education system in the immediate future, and whether a focus on a “school led system” and greater academisation is helping to meet those challenges.  Loic managed to restrain himself from wading into the debate himself, but you can read his thoughts on the the challenges schools face over the next 5 years here.

Are SEND reforms working?

A busy fortnight of parliamentary report launches in October began with “Joining the Dots”. The report argues that despite the positive intentions behind recent SEND reforms, there is much work to make SEND provision more coherent and consistent across the country. It recommends that
  • Regional Schools Commissioners have oversight for SEND provision in their area;
  • that the “local offers” policy be overhauled, and;
  • that SEND has more weight within both ITT and CPD.
You can read Bart's blog about our findings here.

A shortage of examiners?

That same week we launched 'The future for examining', for OCR. In it, we argue that, although we have not yet reached crisis point, there are emerging difficulties in recruiting enough teachers to mark scripts. The report recommends widening the pool of examiners, for example by encouraging more supply teachers and perhaps teaching assistants to become examiners and planning for pay progression as examiners build experience. Read the full report here.

Why Teach?  

The fortnight ended with a launch in parliament of Why Teach? with Pearson, and a launch party at the Ship of Adventures. Amongst other questions, the report explored why some areas struggle more than others to recruit teachers.
In Why Teach? we argue that practical considerations such as transport links and commutability play an important role in where teachers teach, but schools also need to think about what will attract teachers with differing motivations.

Flow diagram showing teachers' inter-regional mobility, from the region where they attended school as students on the left, to the region in which they now work on the right. Source: Why Teach?

We were delighted to receive wide press coverage, with articles in the Guardian, the Independent, the Mirror, TES, SchoolsWeek as well as radio slots on the Today programme and 5Live.

You can view key stats here or read the full report here.

Does anyone care about our leaders?
In December we launched ‘Building the Leadership Pool in London Schools’. It found that middle leaders in London are more ambitious than elsewhere. 49% of London’s primary school leaders and 31% of secondary leaders aspire to be a head teacher. Despite this, London schools struggle more than others to employ head teacher.  The GLA are considering the proposals including setting up a talent pool of future leaders. Watch this space for more details! Read Anna's blog on the report here.

Things to look out for in the New Year
2016 is shaping up to be another exciting year. Look out for a study we’re doing for London Youth looking at the potential for collaboration between schools and youth clubs.

We’ve also written a piece suggesting ways to break the links between SEND and poverty for the Joseph Rowntree Foundation as well as a report for Teaching Leaders on what makes for effective middle leadership, a critical role within schools that doesn’t receive as much attention as it should. We’ve got lots to get stuck into in 2016!

And finally...
From everyone at LKMco, we wish you all a merry Christmas and a wonderful New Year!
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