Best Practice

The new reception baseline assessment

In March 2014, the Department for Education announced plans to introduce a baseline assessment for all children at the start of reception. Catherine Kirkup, from NFER’s Centre for Assessment, answers some of the big questions that schools have been asking


Secrets to science success

After helping to redraft the new primary science curriculum, Anne Goldsworthy discusses some key considerations for school leaders when delivering the new programmes of study and lists some key tenets to science success.


What can schools do about mental health?

New government advice highlights the route to CAMHS – but schools portray CAMHS as a service in crisis. What can we do to help pupils struggling with their mental health? Suzanne O’Connell reports.


A challenging year ahead for school food

On top of the challenge of expanding free school meals to all key stage 1 children, schools now face new school food standards in January. Suzanne O’Connell looks at the challenges ahead for school food.


The consequences of the Trojan Horse affair

Successive governments have viewed the governing body as a means of keeping schools in line. However, with autonomy being abused in some cases, is it governors who now need reining in?



Saying goodbye to levels

Will Millard explores some of the new approaches schools are devising to replace curriculum levels


Professional learning

The expertise is within our primary schools, but how can we encourage all teachers to share their best practice? Fiona Aubrey-Smith asks some challenging questions and offers some ideas



Shop ‘til you drop!

Helen Frostick reports on a project marrying the concepts of shopping and business to inspire year 6 pupils to consider career options, build team-work skills and solve mathematical problems


Classroom furniture

Education furniture specialist Trevor Gillman examines recent research linking classroom design to improved performance in schools and offers his tips for creating the optimum learning environment


A little perspective

The outdoor experiences on offer at Millbank Academy are a vital part of life at this inner city school. Principal Alyson Russen discusses why their residential visits are so important and how they go about organising them


Rewild your pupils!

Outdoor education expert Chris Hupp explores the importance of rewilding students and bringing outdoor learning into the daily life of a school


Mapping a new primary curriculum

For the past year, Cornwall Learning has been working with pilot schools to create and test the new primary curriculum. Sally Griffin explains some of the lessons they have learnt and the principles they have used


A focus on mindfulness

Mindfulness has become a familiar term, but what does it really mean and does it have a place in our schools? Amanda Bailey discusses how mindfulness can help children in particular to grow and develop


Attachment Theory and its implications

A new programme to raise awareness of the practical implications of attachment issues in schools has published a set of training materials for teachers, school leaders and governors. Dr Janet Rose and Richard Parker explain


Weighing up the assessment revolution

You could be forgiven for feeling a little dizzy with all the changes to assessment policy and practice, not least the removal of levels. The NFER’s Liz Twist offers a summary of the changes to date and advice on handling the new assessment regime


Reflections on an inspection

They had been expecting the call, but the reaction of the entire staff when Ofsted arrived was phenomenal. Here follows anonymous extracts from a diary kept by the headteacher during the inspection


Aiming for the top job

In September, Emma Williams will embark on her first headship. Here, she describes her leadership journey – the challenges she has faced and the skills she has learnt along the way – and offers encouragement and advice to other would-be headteachers


Assessment – what we know so far

Deciphering the new assessment and accountability requirements for primary schools is no small challenge. Camilla Erskine and Sue Walton discuss what is proposed and what it means for schools


Preparing for English and mathematics

We’ve left the basics until last. In the final article in our series on preparing for the new curriculum, Suzanne O’Connell focuses on the national curriculum for English and maths and the advice available for those gearing up for September 2014


The top six Pupil Premium problems

What are the main Pupil Premium challenges faced by primary schools? Catherine Stevens from the Challenge the Gap initiative outlines six key challenges to effective Pupil Premium strategies and offers some solutions


Getting the inside track on Ofsted requirements

The School Inspection Handbook, subsidiary guidance, and a growing number of Ofsted briefings – where would we be without the wealth of inspectors’ guidelines issued by Ofsted HQ? As yet another batch is released, we look at some of the key messages


SPONSORED ARTICLE: The boy in the corner?

Jonathan Ovenden discusses the challenges of raising achievement for white working class boys and suggests ways to work with those who are disaffected to reignite their enthusiasm for learning.


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Headteacher Update is the only magazine delivered directly to every primary school headteacher in the UK. It is published six times a year, at the beginning of each term and half-term, to keep headteachers up-to-date with everything going on in primary education.

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