Education Policy and Research Service 2023-2024 Weekly Update 5 June 2024

Dear Subscribers

I hope that those of you in schools and colleges had a pleasant and restful half term break. I have taken the opportunity to begin work on the June summaries and have so far summarised a report from Ofqual on AI and Ofsted’s review of teachers’ professional development – both worth a read.

So, on to the latest updates from the world of education.

We begin with news of a key appointment – the Secretary of State for Education, Gillian Keegan, has named Sir Ian Bauckham as the Government’s candidate of choice for the position of Ofqual Chief Regulator. Sir Ian was formerly the Chief Executive Officer of the Tenax Schools Academy Trust, and he has chaired the board of Oak National Academy since 2020.

Since my last email, there have been some updates and guidance worth noting. Most importantly, perhaps, the DfE’s key safeguarding document, Keeping Children Safe in Education has been updated, although this is currently for information only – the updated document comes into force on 1st September 2024. Most of the changes made to next year’s document involve additional clarification, or changes made to align the document with the revised ‘Working together to safeguard children’ guidance. One significant change is the addition of text which includes further clarification to comply with the new draft guidance on gender questioning children guidance which is currently under consultation. Moving on to other updates, you may be aware of the school census, the mechanism by which the DfE collects information from schools on a termly basis. Census dates for 2024-25 have now been published, along with some changes regarding the data which must be submitted. There are also updates about the scheme which provides free period products to pupils in schools, and on senior mental health lead training.

On to some new statistics. Ofqual has just published the latest statistics on exam entries for GCSE, AS and A level.  Within the overall increase of 4.8 % in GCSE entries, there are marked increases in statistics and engineering and decreases in citizenship and performing arts. At A-level, entries to further maths increased by 19.8%, physics by 12.6%, computing by 11.8% and maths by 11.4%.

Another set of statistics details the graduate employment and earnings outcomes for the tax year 2021-22 of those who graduated 5 years earlier in 2016. The data tell us that for most providers and subjects, graduates’ earnings have increased at or above the rate of inflation since 2015-16. They also tell us that in some subjects, there is significant variation in earnings depending on where students studied. The biggest differences in median earnings between providers were for graduates in Computing (£23,400 to £99,600), followed by Economics, Law, and Mathematical Sciences. 

I look forward to updating you again next week.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email
Scroll to Top