At a glance headlines: December 5, 2013

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The latest in the stand-off between teaching unions and the government, autism CPD, supporting bereaved children and tips to avoid your school falling victim to cheque fraud are among the SecEd At a glance headlines for December 5, 2013.

Talks deadlock

The NASUWT and National Union of Teachers (NUT) have written a further letter to education minister Michael Gove as attempts to hold talks to discuss on-going trade disputes continue to flounder. The unions are angry that Mr Gove wants to invite other unions to any talks that take place. A series of letters on the issue were exchanged last month. The latest letter from union chiefs Chris Keates and Christine Blower states: “You should be clear that meetings set up specifically with the NASUWT and the NUT to discuss the substance of our disputes are more likely to lead to the resolution of our trade disputes. We regret your prevarication ... You are playing games which are not in the interests of children and young people or the teaching profession.” The unions are taking action over workload, cuts to pensions, and changes to pay and working conditions.

Autism CPD

Government-funded autism CPD and training targeting post-16 as well as early years providers is being rolled out via national hubs. It is the latest stage of the Autism Education Trust’s schools training programme and the hubs for the post-16 training will be in Birmingham, Kent, London and the East Midlands. Post-16 training materials have been developed by a team of specialists led by Ambitious About Autism and will be piloted from January 2014. The AET Training Programme, launched in 2012, is the largest ever face-to-face autism training programme for schools in England. Visit: www.autismeducationtrust.org.uk

Anti-fraud tips

A fraud prevention guide has been published to help schools avoid common pitfalls and protect themselves from fraud when paying by cheque. Industry body, the Cheque and Credit Clearing Company, says that criminal gangs continue to target educational establishments with a particular type of scam – incepting mail in an attempt to find a cheque written by an educational establishment, copying the cheque, then using the counterfeit cheques to buy goods and services during the school holidays when it is unlikely that anyone at the school will be checking bank statements. You can download the free guide online. Visit: www.chequeandcredit.co.uk/media/news/-/page/2122/

Bereavement help

A short e-learning programme is offering support to help teachers meet the needs of bereaved children. Charity Child Bereavement UK works with 5,000 professionals a year and has launched the hour-long course with the aim of increasing confidence and offering practical advice. The charity reports that 92 per cent of children and young people will experience a significant bereavement before the age of 16, and one in 29 will be bereaved of a sibling or parent – a child in every class. However, recent research found that 80 per cent of school staff have had no bereavement training. Visit: www.childbereavementuk.org


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