Plans for a Year 3 phonics re-check in primary schools abandoned – Friday 3 February 2017

This week I report on the Government’s decision to abandon plans for a Year 3 phonics re-check, school governors in West Sussex are threatening to “strike” over the new funding formula and new research published examining good practice in early education.

Year 3 phonics re-check abandoned
This week Government officials have told Schools Week that a phonics re-check for eight year olds will not be rolled out to all primary schools following a pilot carried out in June last year.  Pupils will continue to be assessed on phonics in Years 1 and 2.

Escalating dispute over spending cuts threatening the first ever school governors “strike”
Schools governors in West Sussex are warning MPs that they will refuse to sign off budgets or carry out their supervisory work unless their “urgent concerns” about funding are addressed. The DfE has argued that the new funding formula will provide a much fairer basis for allocating funds to schools, and will give Headteachers more certainty over their future budgets and long-term planning.

Governing bodies and schools can have their say on the next stage of the National Funding Formula by filling in the online survey before the 22 March 2017 deadline.

Research examining good practice in early education as part of the study of early education and development (SEED)
At the end of last month results from a study exploring how good quality early years settings articulated, established and sustained good practice, which had the potential to improve child outcomes, was published.

Focusing on provision for two to four year olds the study examines good practice in relation to curriculum planning, assessment and monitoring, staffing, managing transitions and communication with parents and home learning.