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Education in the Media: Monday 29 October 2018

Posted by: , Posted on: - Categories: children in care, Damian Hinds

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Today’s Education in the Media blog looks at the value of homework, as well as the Care Leaver Covenant.


Yesterday, Sunday 29 October, the Sunday Times published an op-ed by the Education Secretary Damian Hinds on the importance and value of homework.

The piece – and the accompanying news story – makes clear that it is ultimately up to headteachers and school leaders to decide whether to set homework and the consequences if children do not complete it.

The Education Secretary is clear that we trust school leaders to issue homework in a sensible and proportionate way that has lasting benefits.

Education Secretary Damian Hinds said:

No-one wants children spending an inordinate amount of time every night doing homework. There are other important things to do — such as playing outside, family time, eating together.

Good homework policies avoid excessive time requirements, focusing on quality rather than quantity and making sure that the work set has a clear purpose.

The government helped set up the Education Endowment Foundation in 2011 as an independent expert body to study and advise on “what works” in schools. The foundation has established that, although there are more significant educational improvements from homework at secondary school, there can still be a modest but positive impact at primary level.

Care Leavers

Today, Monday 29 October, the Telegraph ran an interview with the Children and Families Minister Nadhim Zahawi on the Boarding Schools Partnership.

In the piece, the Minister sets out his ambition to help care leavers succeed in later life – suggesting that independent schools should admit more children in care.

The interview also covers the Care Leaver Covenant, announced by Minister Zahawi last week to help businesses, charities and government departments to support care leavers by offering work placements and apprenticeships.

Children and Families Minister Nadhim Zahawi said:

Becoming an adult is a daunting and challenging time for all of us, but I know from speaking to many young people leaving care, this transition can feel like facing a cliff edge.

This is a landmark moment on how businesses can support care leavers, who through no fault of their own have been dealt a difficult hand in life.

Young people leaving care have often overcome huge challenges but struggle to achieve the same positive outcomes in life as their peers, which is simply not fair. When we talk about burning injustices, this is what we mean - so we need to be more ambitious for these young people.

Working with businesses, charities and every government department, our new Covenant will improve the offer we make to these young people, through work placements, skills training or access to university so that they can fulfil their potential and flourish as adults.

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