Henri Matisse said that ‘Creativity takes courage.’ Just as significantly, creativity in the curriculum inspires courage in young learners. In a world where the landscape of traditional professions is set to be transformed by the ever advancing march of technology, we need to enable our pupils to become innovative and creative thinkers, at ease with unexpected perspectives and fresh ideas.
The creative industries contribute almost £90bn net to the UK’s GDP and more than 10% of British workers already work in this expanding sector of the economy. In a complex, unstable, exciting world, it is those young people who are able to blend technological understanding with creative energy and intuition who will flourish in the second half of the twenty first century.
Homework has been with us for as long as we have had schools and it seems always to have been the subject of debate.
Yet even in the relatively recent past, homework was not as universal as it is now. Only twenty years ago, just 60% primary schools made their pupils do homework but as pressure for results has increased, so has the ubiquity of homework.
Of course, there are always rebels, particularly amongst primary school heads. Every year there are headlines in the education pages of the newspapers reporting that a head teacher somewhere has abolished homework in favour of allowing children to relax and enjoy the freedom to play in their childhood. Opponents of homework often cite the American academic Alfie Kohn in support of their argument. Kohn wrote the influential study “The Homework Myth: Why Our Kids Get Too Much of a Bad Thing.’ Reflecting on his research Kohn observes, ‘What surprised me is not the downside of homework, but the fact there appears to be no upside. No study has ever shown an academic benefit to homework before high school.’
Secondary state school offers are already out there and with the Primary offers recently issued, this is an apprehensive time as it gets more difficult to secure one of those desired school places. It can be tough surviving National Offer Day when the realisation hits home that the best performing state schools are massively oversubscribed.
If you have not been offered a place for your child at your preferred school there are routes you can take. You can appeal and put your child on waiting lists for any other school you have applied for.
As parents receive their secondary school offers on National Offer Day, the realisation hits that the best performing state schools are massively oversubscribed. The national increase in secondary school applications year on year has risen by more than 15,000 and with only one in six children receiving their first choice of secondary school, some parents are left disappointed on National Offer Day.
So what are your options? If you have not been offered a place for your child at your preferred school there are routes you can take. You can appeal and put your child on waiting lists for any other school you have applied for.