Activematters fully supports UKActive in their drive to get ‘more people more active’ – but we should always remember that positive habits towards physical activity are formed very early on – and that adults must play an effective role in encouraging young children to engage in daily active play that will support their overall development.
An interesting study by John Reilly and his colleagues – and very useful for us. If physical activity levels start to decline from aged 7 – as this study suggests – and not at aged 13 as has been claimed previously – then it is even more imperative that we in EY get some solid foundations in place and absolutely critical that the CMO/EY/PA guidelines are embedded in the EYFSC – and not treated as irrelevant footnotes that ‘may be referred to’ – as is written in the recent Revised Strategic Framework.
The RCPCH reports are always worth reading - well researched - well written - and include recommendations that actually make sense - and that have a chance of implementation. This one is timely - the EYFSC is currently being amended to include the CMO/EY physical activity guidelines - Ofsted will respond - and we will have to act - fast. There is much we can do as a community to support all efforts to address obesity issues - read this - and be provoked into action.
Childhood obesity is now an epidemic in the UK, with twelve per cent of children starting nursery overweight or obese. This number rises to 22 per cent at reception age, and 33 percent by the time children arrive at secondary school.
BBC News | Judith Burns | Education reporter | 11 May 2016
Too many British pupils are trying to learn in classrooms which are damaging their health and education, say architects.
And too many teachers are quitting, blaming stressful and overcrowded working conditions, says the Royal Institute of British Architects.
It blames rising pupil numbers and government cuts to capital funding.
England's Department for Education says it will invest £23bn in school buildings over the next five years.
In England, only 5% of 60,000 buildings in 18,000 schools surveyed were in top condition, performing as intended and operating efficiently, according to Riba's analysis of government figures published last year.
BBC News | Hannah Richardson, Education Reporter | 29 April 2016
The testing regime for primary schools in England is in chaos and distracting to pupils, says the National Association of Head Teachers.
Heads gathering for the union's annual conference in Birmingham are urging the government to work with them to set up a new assessment system for next year.
NAHT head Russell Hobby said primary tests no longer gave parents reliable information on children's progress.
Tests allow teachers to spot when pupils need more help, say ministers.
The NAHT highlighted issues such as a lack of time to implement the new primary curriculum and its "inappropriate content", a lack of clarity on standards and contradictory guidelines plus the late publication of materials.
Poorer primary children who had taken part in after-school clubs were found to get better results at age 11 than peers from similar homes who had not.
The Nuffield Foundation says clubs are an "easy vehicle" for enrichment.
The findings come as ministers plan to use money from a sugar tax on fizzy drinks to fund after-school activities.
The researchers analysed information on more than 6,400 children in England taking part in the Millennium Cohort Study, which has been following children born in 2000-01 from birth.
They defined disadvantaged children as those whose family income was below the poverty line - that is below 60% of the average household income.
The study found taking part in activities after the formal school day could play a role in closing the attainment gap between children from economically disadvantaged backgrounds and those with more family resources.
BBC News | Hannah Richardson - education and social affairs reporter
The UK is lagging behind other rich countries on reducing inequalities between rich and poor children, a Unicef report says.
The UN body set up to promote the rights and wellbeing of children highlights "concerning gaps in health, education, and income".
The lack of progress means ambitions to eradicate child poverty are unlikely to be realised in coming years, it adds.
The government said there were 300,000 fewer children in poverty since 2010.
The gap between rich and poor had narrowed in the UK in recent years, largely because the income of the poorest families had fallen more slowly than that of the average household, Unicef said in its Report Card 13 report.
But Unicef added that were it not for benefits, the income gap in Britain would be among the greatest in Europe.
Investigation into Perry Beeches academy trust finds serious concerns about financial management, control and governance
Government reports raised concerns about potential conflicts of interest involving Perry Beeches academy trust and companies linked to some of its senior administrators. They also found problems with the number of pupils declared as eligible for free school meals.
Independent | Richard Garner Education Editor | 20 March 2016
Teachers will call for a ballot on boycotting baseline tests for four-year-olds when they meet for their annual conference next weekend.
New tests from this September will make children in England “among the most tested in Europe”, the National Union of Teachers’ annual conference in Brighton will be told.
The baseline tests are designed to inform teachers about the abilities of pupils starting school. They will also be used to rank primary schools in league tables by showing how much, or how little, children’s performance has improved.
The Guardian | Denis Campbell Health policy editor | 19 March 2016
Prof Ivo Vlaev says all products containing excess sugar should be taxed to prevent consumers switching to substitutes
Answering questions at the conclusion of a European council summit in Brussels on Friday, David Cameron brushed off suggestions that the levy could be extended to chocolate.
The prime minister said: “Those are the proposals we have brought forward. If we wanted to bring forward other proposals we would have done – we didn’t, we brought forward the sugary drinks proposal, and that is the right one in my view.”
HM Treasury, Department for Education, HM Revenue & Customs and Prime Minister's Office | 18 March 2016
Tax-Free Childcare will be available to around 2 million households to help with the cost of childcare, enabling more parents to go out to work, if they want to, to provide greater security for their families. Here’s the top ten things to know about the scheme…