e-Bulletin – Issue 53

Issue 53 – 10 December 2018

 Local Update

 A reminder that the next headteacher breakfast meeting is on Friday 11 January 08:30-10:00 at the Learning Campus. The briefing is aimed at headteachers or their representatives and is offered at no charge to schools; all we ask is that you book a place so that we can provide a light continental breakfast from 08:15.

We’ve got a great line up of contributions from schools picking up on two key current Ofsted priorities – curriculum design and development and the role of oracy. Both are essential elements of great schools, so we thought it would be helpful to hear from two schools and ask them to share what they are doing in their context to inspire and provoke thought and debate.


08:30 – 08:55 Ofsted Update – Kate Rumboll
08:55 – 09:15 Curriculum leadership. One school’s response to Ofsted’s focus on ‘knowing more and remembering more.’ Headteacher, Sara Boyce and colleagues from High Ash C of E Primary
09:15 – 09:20 Questions
09:20 – 09:40 St Michael’s Catholic School (an all though school in Wycombe). An approach to oracy and involvement with School 21 known nationally for its approach and success at placing oracy at the heart of its curriculum. Executive headteacher, Garret Fay and colleagues from the primary and secondary phase
09:40 – 09:45 Questions
09:45 – 10:00 Plenary


If you’ve not already booked and would like to attend, please e mail tradedsupport@learningtrust.net

Ofsted Annual Report 2018: Key Findings

Ofsted has published its Annual Report for 2018.

The key findings from the report, which is based on inspection evidence from approximately 30,000 inspections include:

  • 95% of Early Years providers judged to be good or outstanding, vs 74% in 2012
  • 86% of schools judged to be good or outstanding at their most recent inspection
  • 490 schools identified as being ‘stuck’, having been judged to require improvement or be inadequate in every inspection since 2005
  • Concern about a trend of rising exclusions of SEN students and that pupils with Special Educational Needs are missing out on support
  • Concern that there is a lack of Mental Health provision and that this is not evenly distributed across the country leaving some young people vulnerable.

The full report can be found here.

 DfE Research: Approaches to Supporting Academically Able Disadvantaged Children

The Department for Education has published research into how Secondary Schools have supported the most academically able disadvantaged children.

The research can be found here.   It includes results from a survey to understand the types of support offered by schools, interviews and case study work.

Inspection Data Summary Report (IDSR) update now available

 Really useful guidance has also been updated to support leaders and governors. I would encourage you to take look at the documents ‘Introduction to IDSR’ and ‘Inspection data summary report: general guidance’ as there are some really helpful clarifications including changes to the content for 2018.


The link above also takes you to a range of documents providing inspectors and schools with information and guidance about Ofsted’s new inspection data summary report, including:

·         general guidance on using the new IDSR for key stages 1 and 2

·         guidance on areas to investigate for the IDSR

·         a spreadsheet that illustrates the 5 cut points dividing the range of data and determines which quintile they fall into – this is useful when analysing your school’s data to determine why your school may fall into a particular rank


Finally, in the spirit of doing our bit to support a good work life balance, we have decided to make this the final edition until the new year. We will of course continue to monitor and capture anything significant that is published in the world of education and include in the first edition of 2019, which we will release on Monday 7 January. Thank you for your engagement, enthusiasm and generosity in sharing articles/ideas to include over the past year – it’s great to know the e-Bulletin is being read and that at times we include something useful or thought provoking! I’ve loved the professional discussion that it’s provoked; thank you.

From all of us at BLT we wish you a very Happy Christmas, whether you be spending Christmas alone, with family, elderly relatives or pets – enjoy. I hope that you find some time for yourself to do what you truly love over the festive period.

Have a super week.


Kate Rumboll

Director of Education Standards

Buckinghamshire Learning Trust


National Update

 Ofsted: Teacher Well-Being and Workload Survey, Interim Findings

Ofsted have released emerging findings from their Well-Being and Workload survey which was commissioned by Amanda Spielman, Her Majesty’s Chief Inspector, at the beginning of the summer term 2018.

Details can be found here.

The key findings so far include:

  • 76% of teachers report that their job impacts negatively on their mental health and 60% report that it adversely impacts their physical health
  • 25% of all respondents have been absent from work due to illnesses that have been made worse by work
  • 31% of teachers report low well-being at work compared to 18% of leaders


Anna Freud Centre: Ten Steps to Improve Staff Well-Being

The Anna Freud Centre for Children and Families has published ‘Ten Steps Towards Staff Well-Being’.  This follows a call by the charity to make this year a year of wellbeing for school staff following a survey that found that 60% of school staff felt that their work / life balance had caused them unhappiness and stress.

The report and an accompanying booklet can be found here.


Selective Schools Expansion Fund

The Department for Education has announced that 16 selective schools have been given permission to expand after committing to improving access for disadvantaged pupils.

The schools will receive funding from the £50m Selective Schools Expansion Fund and have all set out clear actions to prioritise access for Pupil Premium children.

More details can be found here.


Book Trust:  Under My Sky Poetry Competition

The Book Trust have launched Under My Sky, a poetry competition for Primary Schools.  Children are asked to write a poem on the theme of nature or their local environment.   

More information can be found here.

The deadline for submissions is Friday 18 January 2019 at 5pm.


Information for Parents on the English Baccalaureate

The Department for Education has published an information leaflet for parents on the English Baccalaureate entitled ‘Help Your Child Make The Best GCSE Choices’

The leaflet can be found here.


Deals for Schools: Updated

The Department for Education has updated Deals for Schools to include 3 additional energy and utilities deals.

Information on the deals available to schools can be found here.


Education Endowment Foundation Guidance Report: Working With Parents To Support Children’s Learning


The EEF have published their latest guidance report ‘Working With Parents To Support Children’s Learning’.

The report reviews the best available research and offers schools four key recommendations to support parental engagement in children’s learning.  The four recommendations are:

  • Critically review how you work with parents
  • Provide practical strategies to support learning at home
  • Tailor school communications to encourage positive dialogue about learning
  • Offer more sustained and intensive support where needed.


The full report can be downloaded here