Resources > Industry news and Policy Archive

Industry news and Policy Archive

An archive of industry news and policy updates for education professionals

2015 | 20142013 and older


March 2016 

Early intervention Foundation report on parental relationships and outcomes for children.

The Early Intervention Foundation has recently published: ‘What works to enhance inter-parental relationships and improve outcomes for children?’ 


January 2016 

Minister Edward Timpson announces £80 million to extend opportunities to children with special educational needs and disabilities.

Read more > [external website]

PACEY sets out vision for developing the early years workforce.

Read more > [external website]


Mindfulness: the craze sweeping through schools is now at a university near you.

Read more > [external website]



January 2015

Can your secondary school afford NOT to have a Head of Wellbeing?

The outcome of a new study from 2020health and Nuffield Health proposes the introduction of dedicated and co-ordinated support in schools to combat unmet mental health and wellbeing needs.

Read about the research and share your ideas on what support you would like to see.



July 2014

Government approves new SEND Code of Practice

The SEND Code of Practice: 0 to 25 has now been approved by Government. Take a look at all the documentation on the official website.  


Government announces funding to improve local autism services

The Government announced it has made £1.2 million of funding available to improve local autism services and increase awareness. See how you can apply for a grant on the official website.  

If you are interested in assessment measures for autism spectrum disorders, download our latest brochure (1 MB).


March 2014

Government announces an All Party Parliamentary Group on Numeracy and Maths

On World Maths day (March 12, 2014), Elizabeth Truss MP announced the launch of an All Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) for Maths and Numeracy. Read more >


January 2014

Researching boost for neuroscience and attainment

Research into how ‘children’s brains perform’ has been boosted by The Education and Neuroscience Fund which is offering schools and researchers the chance to share £6m to see if neuroscience-based interventions could increase educational attainment. Read more > 



July 2013

Evaluation of Pupil Premium Funding

The Department of Education has published a new document independently evaluating the uses of Pupil Premium Funding in England. Pupil Premium funds were increased to £623 per eligible pupil in 2012 to 2013. The report aims to look at how schools are currently using funds and how improvements can be made for the future. 

See our guide to Making Pupil Premium Count


June 2013

New-look tougher GCSE exams revealed

Plans for an overhaul of the GCSE system have been announced by the Education Secretary, Michael Gove. Due to be introduced from 2015, the new GCSEs ‘will move from coursework to exams at the end of two years and will be graded from 8 to 1, rather than A* to G.’

More on this story:


April 2013

New Royal college of Teaching Proposed

Discussions to create a new Royal College of Teaching have begun this month, following the publication of a series of ‘think pieces in a booklet’ entitled ‘Towards A Royal College of Teaching’. The aim of the college would be to raise the status of teachers. The call for a new college has been backed by MPs on the Education select Committee; with committee member Charlotte Leslie highlighting that the college must be ‘created by the teaching profession and not the government.’

More on this story:


February 2013

Children and Families Bill

February 2013 sees the launch of the new Children and Families Bill, which aims to improve services for vulnerable children and support strong families. The new bill covers systems for adoption, looked after children, family justice and special educational needs.

Key features: include the extension of the SEN system from birth to 25, giving children, young people and their parent’s greater control and choice.

Find out more about the Bill via the Department of Education’s website >


Children's laureate: Pupils learn to read 'in many ways'

Julia Donaldson, Children’s laureate and author of The Gruffalo has highlighted the importance of recognising that pupils learn to read in "various different ways” in an article recently published on the BBC Website. In the article, Donaldson raises concerns over the minister’s promotion of phonics for reading and questions the role of the new reading text for six year olds; suggesting that the latest approach may have gone too far and the checks had the potential to leave some pupils ‘feeling they had failed’. 

Read our feature on the article >


2014 National Curriculum to include new focus on Speech, Language and Communication

The new National Curriculum Review compiled by an expert panel review consisting of Mary James, Tim Oates (Chair), Andrew Pollard and Dylan William, foregrounds the “compelling body of evidence that highlights a connection between oral development, cognitive development and educational attainment.” and recommends “that the development of oral language should be a strong feature of any new National Curriculum.”

Read press release >

Download a copy of The Framework for the National Curriculum from the Department for Education website >


Pre-Feb 2013 

2014 National Curriculum to include new focus on Speech, Language and Communication

The new National Curriculum Review compiled by an expert panel review consisting of Mary James, Tim Oates (Chair), Andrew Pollard and Dylan William, foregrounds the “compelling body of evidence that highlights a connection between oral development, cognitive development and educational attainment.” and recommends “that the development of oral language should be a strong feature of any new National Curriculum.” 

Read press release >

Download a copy of The Framework for the National Curriculum from the Department for Education website > 


Access Arrangements

Please see our guide to Access Arrangements, including regulations, requirements and testing.


Anti-Bullying Strategies

Anti-bullying campaigns are a key priority for the government. Since the publication of Safe to learn: Embedding anti-bullying work in schools in 2007, the new coalition government has published a further document entitled Preventing and Tackling Bullying: Advice for School Leaders and Governing Bodies.

Pearson Assessment is proud to be a supporter of the Big March via Beatbullying.

Read more >


Breaking the Link - New report on SEN and low attainment

A report published in March 2010 is part of the Breaking the Link series formed by the DFE.

Building on an initial investigation into disadvantage and low attainment, this report looks at where SEN children are benefiting by best practice from local authorities and schools and how this can be further developed. 

Read more >


Call for more early intervention

A report by MP Graham Allen, underlined the importance of ‘regular assessments of all pre-school children, focusing on their social and emotional development’ and called for the establishment of an early intervention foundation – a view supported by Pearson Assessment.

Download a copy of MP Graham Allen’s report and read our press response.


Early Years Foundation Review Published by Dame Clare Tickell

Following on from the calls for review of the Early Years Foundation back in July 2010, Dame Clare Tickell, has this month (March 2011) published ‘The Early Years: Foundations for life, health and learning’. The document which sets out a number of recommendations that builds on the work of the EYFS, and calls for the framework to be ‘radically slimmed down’ to make it ‘easier to understand, less burdensome and more focused on making sure children start school ready to learn.’

Following this report Children’s Minister Sarah Teather’s has confirmed plans (Dec 11) for the reformed EYFS that reduces bureaucracy for professionals, provides earlier intervention for children facing difficulties and better prepares young children for learning in school.’

See The Tickell Review of the Early Years Foundation Stage for more details.


Education Psychologists to receive £16 million to support training

The DfE has announced that £16million will be set aside to support the training of Educational Psychologists over the next three years.

Read more >


Families in the Foundation Years

Recent reports which highlighted that a number of children are beginning school without knowing their own name, has helped lead to the creation of a new website entitled Families in the Foundation Years designed to give parents the information they need to support their child’s development.

If you are a professional working with parents, our recently published book Working in Partnership: The Family Partnership Model is worth exploring, along with the article by Michelle MacGrath in Senco Update, Issue 122, Feb 2011.

Read the BBC report with Jean Gross, Communication Champion on Why some children 'don't know their name'. For additional support on the development stages of children’s communication download a copy of Universally Speaking, the ages and stages of children’s communication development from birth to 5.


Health and Education must come together to ensure better communication provision for children and young people in the UK

Pearson Assessment welcomes the 30 recommendations made by Jean Gross, outgoing Communication Champion for the UK, in her Two Years On report. The report which spans Jean Gross’ time as an inspiring Communication Champion reviews the excellent work that has been taking place across the country, to support children and young people with speech, language and communication needs; and offers key recommendations for ensuring these services continue to evolve and improve. 

Read press release > 

Download the full report > 


Hello, the National Year of Communication

Last year we were fortunate to be key sponsors of the Hello, national year of communication campaign; a campaign to increase understanding of how important it is for children and young people to develop good communication skills.'Hello' is a campaign to increase understanding of how important it is for children and young people to develop good communication skills.

Run by The Communication Trust, a coalition of over 35 leading voluntary sector organisations, Hello aimed to make communication for all children and young people a priority in homes and schools across the country so they can live life to the full.

Read more >


Jean Gross, Communication Champion, receives a CBE in New Year's Honour list

Pearson Assessment were delighted to hear the news that Jean Gross, Communication Champion, received a CBE in the New Year's Honours List for her services to education.

Read more >


Lamb Enquiry - Special educational needs and parental confidence

This February a response to Brian Lamb’s enquiry into special educational needs and SEN information was published. The response entitled Improving parental confidence in the special educational needs system: An implementation plan  sets out a range of 51 measures to be undertaken across government and which build on the work the announced in the Children’s Plan to improve outcomes for children with Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND). The report aims to revitalise the link between Local authorities, parents and schools to improve children’s opportunities. 

Download a copy of the report (on the Department for Education website):

Brian Lamb's final report on the inquiry into Special Educational Needs and Parental Conference (Dec 2009) can also be downloaded here:


Munro Review of Child Protection

Over a year ago Professor Eileen Munro was commissioned to carry out an independent review of child protection. Her report led to the establishment of an Implementation Working Group (IWG) which draws on the expertise of local authority children’s services, the social work profession, education, police and health services. A dedicated page on the report can be found here.

Read more >


One year on - Report on Children’s Mental Health and Psychological Wellbeing

The first report from the National Advisory Council for Children’s Mental Health and Psychological Wellbeing was published March 2010. The Council came into effect as a direct result of the independent CAMHS Review in 2008 and is accountable for delivering the recommendations raised by the Review.

This report takes a look at the work that has been done so far, the challenges being faced and how the Council plans to move forward. A copy of report can be downloaded here .    


Schools White Paper

The Importance of Teaching: Schools White Paper published November 2010 sets out the new governments ‘radical reform’ for schools; with an emphasis on reducing the constraints imposed on schools and giving head teachers the power and support they need to be at the centre of school improvement.

The paper addresses the areas of teaching and leadership, accountability, behaviour, curriculum, assessment and qualifications, school improvement and funding, along with the new schools system.

A copy of the white paper can be downloaded here, and further information can be found on the Department for Education’s website 


Sir Jim Rose's Dyslexia Review

Supporting students with literacy difficulties and in particular dyslexia has become a government priority with the publication of Sir Jim Rose’s Dyslexia review in June 2009. The report Identifying and Teaching Children and Young People with Dyslexia and Literacy Difficulties (on the DCSF website) which identifies that between 4% and 8% of children’s literacy attainment may be affected by dyslexia, makes recommendations for early identification, teaching and support.

Read more >


Support and Aspiration - the SEN and Disability Green Paper

Support and aspiration: A new approach to special educational needs and disability is a new green paper open for consultation by the Department for Education from the 9 March to 30 June.

Using feedback on areas such as early identification and assessment, parental control, learning and achievement, preparing for adulthood and services for family – the Green paper sets out what has been called the ‘biggest programme of reform in the education and health support for children with special educational needs (SEN) and disabilities in 30 years’.

Support and aspiration: A new approach to special education needs and disability - A consultation

Read more >


Synthetic Phonics

New reading test for six year olds

Driven by the publication of the Schools White Paper, published in November 2010, the government has since announced plans to introduce a new reading test for six year olds in England. The phonics based test, designed to ensure that children’s reading is kept on track, includes non-words such as ‘zort’ and koob’ and has generated much discussion.

To support the introduction of this test the Government has allocated a provision of funding to help schools implement the synthetic phonics approach through the adoption of a high-quality synthetic phonics scheme and training for staff.

For more information visit the dedicated phonics page from the Department for Education website.

What “zort” of impact will the new reading test for six year olds have on reading levels? Read our article on the new reading test and information on the  number of the tests already used by teachers that include non-words or nonsense passages which have proved to have a positive impact when assessing.


Thousands of schools sign up for phonics funding

Is yours one of the 3,211 schools who have signed up for the DfE’s phonics funding program? If so, you may know all about the government’s drive to raise pupil’s standards of reading across the UK.

Read more >


The role of local government in promoting wellbeing

A report, The Role of Local Government in Promoting Wellbeing, has been published by Local Government Improvement and Development (LGID) and the National Mental Health Development Unit (NMHDU).

Written by nef (the new economics foundation), it argues that by focusing on wellbeing local government can respond to significant reductions in its finances, by preventing long-term problems and ensuring that positive outcomes are achieved efficiently. The report also highlights numerous examples of councils who are doing pioneering work in this area, from all parts of the UK.

Download a copy of the report here.




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