At a glance headlines: September 26, 2013


Key stage 2 results, support for deaf students applying to university, a global mass singalong event, and a key stage 3 descriptive writing challenge are among the SecEd At a glance headlines for September 26, 2013.

The results are in

Just over three-quarters of year 6 pupils (76 per cent) achieved the expected levels in reading, writing and maths according to the latest key stage 2 assessments. The 537,800 11-year-olds who took the tests in May this year will have begun their secondary school careers this month. Broken down, 86 per cent of pupils achieved expected levels in reading, 85 per cent in maths and 83 per cent in writing. The latest results also include the new spelling, punctuation and grammar tests, and show that 74 per cent of 11-year-olds reached the Level 4 benchmark – although one third of boys missed this target compared to just one fifth of girls. 

Deaf support

Seven new videos have been published to help deaf students when applying to university. The videos are in British Sign Language and explain key parts of the UCAS process. They can be viewed as a playlist on UCAS TV. The videos were made after UCAS was approached by the Deaf Education Advocacy Fellowship. They cover aspects such as how to apply, choosing a course, open days, personal statements, requesting a reference, and a guide for parents. Visit and

Boarding plea

Boarding schools should always be an option for local authorities when the future of children in social care is being considered, according to the incoming chairman of the Boarding Schools’ Association. The head of St George’s School in Harpenden, Ray McGovern, has taken over the role this month and said that state boarding schools, where the education is free, can offer an alternative to a childhood in social care. He said: “I would like to see the government ensure that at every stage where social care is being considered there is a statutory mechanism for boarding school to be part of the consideration.”

Mass singalong

School choirs and groups are invited to join a global mass singalong to mark the centenary of British composer Benjamin Britten. Performances of Britten’s “Friday Afternoons” songs are already planned by groups across the world. All performances will take place on November 22. It is organised by Aldeburgh Music and scores, accompaniments, lesson plans and teaching aids are available. Visit:


Key stage 3 pupils are being challenged to write a story or an account of an event or place without using dialogue. The National Literacy Trust competition is being run with creative writing expert Alison Wilcox – author of Descriptosaurus – and David Fulton Books. There are resources to help run the project and to develop descriptive writing skills. Winning pieces get books worth £250 for the school and a workshop from Ms Wilcox. The deadline is November 8. Visit:


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