English in the News
Below is a selection of articles which are archived online and may be of interest to NATE members. If you know of others please let us know. Keep up to date with our Twitter feed, too.
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- Scrap English Literature A-level, teachers demand - The Independent, Tuesday April 19, 2005
English literature should be scrapped as a separate exam at A-level, according to a report by the National Association of Teachers of English.
The report says the subject fails to give youngsters the skills they need to write academic essays. Instead, it concentrates too heavily on studying a small number of texts in detail, and writing about them without developing a broader understanding of current culture. As a result, the subject should be merged with the English language A-level, and include study of the modern media.
This article simplifies the message of the NATE discussion and the headline is particularly misleading. See the more balanced reports which appeared in the TES on 25 February 2005, on the BBC site on 19 April and in The Guardian on 20 April (based partly on a NATE press release), all listed here.
The NATE press release about the A Level debate can be read elsewhere on this site.
The article is in response to text : message - The future of A Level English published by NATE earlier this year and available from NATE bookshop. Link broken or innaccurate? Please report here
- Scottish council 'on the brink of eradicating illiteracy' - The Guardian, Friday March 24, 2006
Education officers claimed today they would wipe out illiteracy in one of Britain's most deprived areas by 2007.
A groundbreaking project spanning a decade and involving almost 60,000 children near Glasgow has seen poor reading ability drop from 28% to 6%.Link broken or innaccurate? Please report here
- Science tops rise in test results - BBC, Thursday September 8, 2005
There has been an improvement in the national curriculum test results achieved by teenagers in England.
Figures show 74% achieved the expected level for the end of Key Stage 3 in English and maths and 70% in science. Link broken or innaccurate? Please report here
- Science Sats to be scrapped but maths and English tests expected to continue - The Guardian, Wednesday May 6, 2009
Ruling means Balls faces teaching union boycott; move to discourage creation of league tablesLink broken or innaccurate? Please report here
- Science and maths exams are harder than arts subjects, say researchers - The Guardian, Tuesday July 1, 2008
It's what scientists have always known: the sciences are harder than the arts and the humanities. Now researchers at Durham University have proved it. [...]
Ian McNeilly, director of the National Association for the Teaching of English, said: "It seems scientists, on the one hand, decry the quality of their intake at universities and, on the other, say that their exams are so very hard. Any view of English as a 'soft option' is absolute nonsense. If the scientists tried to do it, they would find it wasn't such a breeze."Link broken or innaccurate? Please report here
- Schools urged to teach basic skills - The Guardian, Tuesday May 8, 2007
Schools are in danger of creating "an army of the unemployable" as teenagers leave school with no qualifications, the leader of a headteachers' union warned yesterday.
Mick Brookes, the general secretary of the National Association of Head Teachers (NAHT), said there needed to be a radical change to the content of lessons taught to primary school children in order to stem this tide of disaffected youth.Link broken or innaccurate? Please report here
- Schools told to publish GCSE results separately - The Guardian, Monday June 20, 2005
The government has ordered around 500 schools to publish their GCSE grades for English and maths separately in this year's league tables amid growing accusations that schools are switching to vocational qualifications to boost their results.Link broken or innaccurate? Please report here
- Schools to use phonics to teach reading - The Guardian, Monday March 20, 2006
All schoolchildren in England will be taught to read using the "back-to-basics" method of phonics from September this year, the government announced today.Link broken or innaccurate? Please report here
- Schools stunned by delay in Sats results - The Guardian, Friday July 4, 2008
Today's embarrassing announcement by ministers of a delay in issuing Sats results for 11- and 14-year-olds has left schools reeling.Link broken or innaccurate? Please report here
- Schools should be rewarded for imaginative teaching, argues academic - The Guardian, Tuesday February 27, 2007
The government should offer schools financial incentives to develop imaginative ways of delivering the national curriculum, a leading academic will suggest today.Link broken or innaccurate? Please report here
- Schools of thought: teach children philosophy, experts urge - The Guardian, Wednesday July 2, 2008
Children of all ages should study philosophy in school to develop their critical thinking skills, education experts said today.Link broken or innaccurate? Please report here
- Schools not improved, say bosses - BBC, Monday August 13, 2007
Business leaders feel educational standards have not improved since 1997, despite official data showing record exam and test results, a report says.Link broken or innaccurate? Please report here
- Schools must teach back-to-basics 'phonics' - The Independent, Monday March 20, 2006
Primary schools will be required by law to teach children to read using a controversial back-to-basics method known as "synthetic phonics", the Government announced today.Link broken or innaccurate? Please report here
- Schools must embrace mobile technology - BBC, Thursday January 14, 2010
The need for schools to prepare for 21st century learning was top of the agenda at this year's BETT conference. They
must embrace mobile technologies, games, podcasts and social
networking, according to leading educationalist Professor Stephen
Heppell. Link broken or innaccurate? Please report here
- Schools minister takes life skills off syllabus - The Guardian, Wednesday December 27, 2006
Ministers have scaled back plans to teach teenagers "life skills" such as communication and teamwork as part of GCSEs and A-levels, despite warnings from employers that too many school leavers are poorly prepared for work.Link broken or innaccurate? Please report here
- Schools minister defends Sats - The Guardian, Tuesday May 13, 2008
The schools minister Jim Knight defended school tests today saying they are vital in preparing children for high-stakes GCSEs and A-levels.Link broken or innaccurate? Please report here
- Schools losing confidence in Sats - The Guardian, Tuesday April 8, 2008
Schools have requested re-marks for more than 100,000 English test papers over the past three years, according to new figures which suggest that some schools are rapidly losing confidence in the government's national testing system.Link broken or innaccurate? Please report here
- Schools hunting 'missing' papers - BBC, Thursday July 24, 2008
Schools in England are trying to track down national curriculum test papers mislaid by the Sats contractor, ETS.Link broken or innaccurate? Please report here
- Schools get new progress targets - BBC, Friday October 12, 2007
Schools have been given new government targets for the progress children in England make during their education.Link broken or innaccurate? Please report here
- Schools find way to boost reading - BBC, Friday July 14, 2006
Schools have found they do not teach reading skills well enough in the early secondary years, a report says.Link broken or innaccurate? Please report here