Every day brings different people through our doors, from youth, unemployed, college or school leavers to ex-young offenders, uni drop-outs and young parents from across London. Each has their own individual needs, goals and outlooks on life.
We keep hearing about strong, confident readers who have failed the government's new Year 1 phonic screener. Is it that our six year olds haven't mastered the art of reading readiness (the point at which a person is ready to learn to read) or is the government assessing the wrong skill?
The danger is that because the Government is failing to manage the bulge, schools will be forced to cut down on outdoor play space, close music rooms and libraries, or crowd children into unsuitable classrooms. All this threatens the quality of teaching and learning for young children. Labour would address the primary crisis by focussing spending on the areas of the country where there is a real need for extra classes. We would end the Government's nonsensical rules which stop councils addressing the capacity crunch head on.
To increases your chances of success you should compete on your strengths; therefore to increase the chances of your pupil's success they should be able to compete where they are strong. For some the traditional track and field events are what they are good at, others it's completing experiments/writing stories/building bridges out of newspaper.
Childhood obesity is an increasing problem and is caused by a simple imbalance between energy in (food) and energy out (exercise and activity) and any attempt at prevention or cure needs to address this imbalance. School lunches are one key part of this equation and if schools can offer low cost, healthy meals then all would be great.
The term 'school ready' gets bandied around a lot in early years care settings. Education Secretary Michael Gove has complained that many children arrive in school "totally unprepared to learn" and just like week Sir Michael Wilshaw, Chief Inspector at Ofsted argued that "a significant minority of children are simply not ready for school".
Combine together 14.7˚C air temperature, 16.7˚C sea temperature, 99% humidity, 15.5 knots of speed, a 250 degree wind, and a wave height of 0.5 metres and what do you have? Well yes a lot of numbers but also the formula for a pretty decent day's sailing last Thursday in Southampton!
Why should blagging be seen as something negative? Blagging is thinking on your feet. Cheekiness is doing it with a bit of charm and an element of dishonesty is always present in business - only the most naive would lay all their cards on the table. So why on earth would some women wish to distance themselves from blagging?
With demand for more than two million engineers over the next few decades, it has never been more important to encourage young people to like science, to choose to study science and, ultimately, to choose careers in engineering.
If you are a child born into a poor family in the UK you are less likely to do well at school, less likely to do well in life and ultimately die at a younger age. This is grossly unfair but true for thousands of our young people.
Hence, the ambitious TAHMO project we are pioneering which requires the installation of 20,000 measuring stations, each one costing only 500 dollars, at intervals of 30 kilometres. The new weather stations, based upon latest cost-effective technology, will measure all standard meteorological variables (rainfall, radiation, temperature, humidity, wind speed, wind direction).
Sex is often an instigating element of relationships and the pressure from peers to engage is outstanding. The psychological damage caused by the influence of sexual relationships founded without understanding their emotional implications can be monumental and, more importantly, can alter a teenager's interpretation of a healthy relationship forever.
It's landmark day - a major milestone. Tots are called pre-schoolers. Everything gears towards this. You picked four schools you wouldn't mind the apple of your eye attending for seven precious years. Three months later, you receive notification... WHERE?
One in ten UK children has dyslexia, a disability which affects how one reads, counts, spells and organises thoughts. In an exam, this can play havoc with how one structures written answers, processes information, recalls from memory or, say, weighs up contributing or overlapping factors.
In Northern Ireland, there is already curriculum covering relationship and sex education, but, difficulty comes in the lack of consistent implementation. This must be addressed urgently by the Education Minister, John O'Dowd.
My point is, if our schools are to remain more than institutions of academia, if we want them to remain the backbone of our communities and a moral compass as well as an educational one, then we need to open up our schools to the support and involvement of local communities and organizations looking to do just that.