Education reforms are some of the most important changes a government can make, and one of the things that parents should keep an eye on.
They affect everyone including teachers, parents and, of course, the children who will experience the changes first hand.
Education reforms can relate to any aspect of the school, from how pupils are assessed to how schools are ranked; from what discipline guidelines are in place to what is included on the curriculum.
So what education reforms have been introduced recently that you ought to know about? Aside from the highly-publicised changes to higher education fees, there have been some key education reforms at all levels over the past year.
Early Years Foundation Stage
Reforms of the pre-school part of a child’s education have been under review for almost a year, and will be introduced in the next school year.
Following an independent review by Dame Clare Tickell, a number of changes are being brought in to effectively slim down the system.
The reforms include dramatically reducing the number of early learning goals, from 69 to 17, and to refocus on specific areas.
These will include communication and language, physical development, and personal, social and emotional development. Sarah Tether, the Children’s Minister, said the reforms will ‘focus on children’s healthy development and make sure they are ready to learn when they enter Year 1.’
Education Act 2011
The Education Act 2011 is the most recent reform to education in the UK. It has already led to a number of changes, with more expected as time goes on.
One of the most famous parts of this Act was the Free School initiative, which enables schools to be set up in communities where there is a demand from local parents for a new school.
One of the more controversial aspects of the Act was the power for schools to search pupils without their consent, but the Government says this will help to keep children safe.