Schools need good wifi access!

Schools lack adequate wi-fi

Only about a quarter of schools in England have good enough wi-fi to get the best out of digital technology, figures suggest.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/go/em/fr/-/news/education-21476385 >

Schools obviously need to provide high quality broadband wi-fi to their students but let’s not be too critical. We’re coming out of the worst recession in a generation and many schools are lacking far more than fast broadband. Playing fields for example?

The internet is obviously rapidly becoming an integral tool in education. As MD of http://www.webtutornet.com I obviously have a vested interest in this but I am concerned that the education system needs funding root and branch. Let’s not forget the fundamentals of our schooling whilst continuing to look to the future.

Security is also important. With growth in internet access in schools comes the increased risk of exposing children to unsuitable material.

I love the D of E spokeswoman’s comment, “Head teachers manage their own budgets and are best placed to decide the extent to which they make wi-fi accessible in their schools.” i.e. whatever the issue it’s not our fault.

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Total shambles on GCSEs u-turn!

Planned switch from GCSEs to Baccalaureate in England ‘abandoned’ http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-21363396#

I think ‘total shambles’ is an apt description for this!

An exam based system with rigorous testing is what we need but it was a typical political move by Michael Gove to come up with sweeping (Baccalaureate) changes based on little or no consultation.

Once again time and money is wasted without being any closer to an examination system worthy of our nation. JUST MAKE THE EXAMS RELEVANT AND DIFFICULT so that we can properly assess future generations and provide them with a solid education (i.e. one with content that it is relevant for all and stretches the gifted).

Let’s also provide vocational qualifications in schools alongside mainstream academic subjects in the compulsory years. Give everybody the ability to learn and help the less academic to find their path in life without labeling them because they cannot achieve top marks in examinations. Well, we can dream…

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ENTRANCE EXAM TUITION IS PARADOX FOR SCHOOLS

Poorest need entrance test help

Some selective state schools should do more to help poorer children pass their entrance exams, suggests a government-funded study.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/go/em/fr/-/news/education-21180679

Unfortunately money (or lack of it) is a bar to many things. It is an unfortunate fact that parents who can afford extra tuition are going to give their children an advantage over those who cannot, whether this is building towards entrance examinations or for general school work.

At K & C we encounter many parents who request tuition for specific school entrance tests as well as for 11+ and 13+. Private tuition working towards these tests creates a paradox for the schools. Clearly what they are looking for is students who can pass not students who can learn to pass through extensive preparation. Many schools continually change their papers to try to subvert this but tutors are never far behind.

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Web safety is all about parental control in increasingly complicated tech world…

** Web safety lessons urged for infants ** Children as young as five should be given lessons in how to use the internet safely, campaigners have urged.

< http://www.bbc.co.uk/go/em/fr/-/news/education-21328411 >

Much of this is about parental control! As a father of three young children I can see how computer use and the internet is of increasing interest to the young. As children become ever more I.T. savvy it is extremely important that parents carefully monitor the content they are accessing.

Publishers of unsuitable websites aimed at the young should also be held strongly to account.

Also, ever more sophisticated mobile devices are equally if not more problematic as they are far more difficult to monitor.

Follow on Twitter @webtutornet @kandctutors