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IOE at 120: the mission to transform education and society continues, 2012-22 and into the future

By Blog Editor, IOE Digital, on 8 December 2022

This is the last in a series of 12 blogs exploring each decade in IOE’s history in the context of the education and society of the times. Find out more about our 120th anniversary celebrations on our website, and follow us on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook and LinkedIn to keep up with everything that’s happening. 

Emma Wisby sums up and wraps up our blog series.

It is important for an organization to have a sense of its history, to take opportunities to reflect on that journey as well as celebrate its contributions and achievements. That is what we have been doing this year at IOE, as it marks its 120thanniversary. It has been an opportunity to recognize the many individuals and organizations that have been a vital part of IOE’s impact. Central to this has been the IOE at 120 blog series, which in this piece we draw together and bring to the present day.

As the series has conveyed, organizationally IOE has taken many different forms:

  • from elementary teacher training college for London with just 58 students,
  • to the Area Training Organization for London, overseeing some 30 teacher education colleges,
  • and back to a single entity; from one of England’s esteemed ‘mono-technics’ or ‘specialist institutions’, alongside the likes of the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine and Royal College of Art,
  • to a world-leading faculty within UCL.

In parallel, we see IOE’s influence on the field of education studies and then, over more recent decades, related areas of social science and the arts (more…)

School belonging: the conviction of hope

By Blog Editor, IOE Digital, on 1 November 2022

The School Belonging Colloquium Team: Julia Dobson, Professor Kathryn Riley (back row, left to right) Kristy Campbell, Dr Rahil Alipour ( front row, left to right)

The School Belonging Colloquium Team: Julia Dobson, Professor Kathryn Riley (back row, left to right); Kristy Campbell, Dr Rahil Alipour (front row, left to right)

Kathryn Riley.

It’s time to hone our skills. As educators in a chaotic national climate, we need to bear witness to what is happening today and its impact on our young people. We also need to walk the path of hope and possibilities. This is not easy.

Disconnection, disengagement and disillusionment are in the air. Poverty and insecurity are growing, with significant consequences for the very fabric of society. Yet how we talk and act as educators, will influence how young people see themselves today and view their future place in the world.

At a recent UCL School Belonging Colloquium, Dame Mary Marsh, one-time CEO of the NSPCC saw the contemporary challenge in these terms: the biggest poverty of all is that of hope’. In today’s strange, dark and difficult times schools, wherever they are in the world, need to be places of belonging and hope. (more…)

SEND Green Paper: what kind of training would help professionals better support children and young people?

By Blog Editor, IOE Digital, on 4 October 2022

Workshop participants in a session

Photo: Jason Ilagan for UCL Faculty of Education and Society

Miriam McBreen and Jo Van Herwegen.

In our third blog post responding to the DFE’s Green Paper reviewing the Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND) system, we consider what training the workforce needs so that practitioners are equipped to effectively support pupils with SEND. This involves considering the role of multiple educational professionals, including Special Education Needs Coordinators (SENCOs), teachers and teaching assistants (TAs).

SENCOs play a central role in supporting children with SEND. They coordinate children’s provision, help implement the graduated response to need, and work with key stakeholders around the child. SENCOs are currently required to have a Master’s level qualification and it is important that this qualification be maintained. It helps ensure that they have access to up-to-date research, develop critical engagement with current issues in the field, and become reflective in their practice. Indeed, Esposito and Carroll demonstrate a range of evidence that SENCOs are critically engaging with research at the (more…)

SEND Green Paper: How do we update the processes used in the SEND system to make it more efficient?

By Blog Editor, IOE Digital, on 26 September 2022

Early diagnosis is crucial. Photo:  RetyiRetyi / Pixabay

Miriam McBreen and Jo Van Herwegen.

In our second blog post responding to the DFE’s Green Paper on the future of special educational needs and disabilities (SEND) and alternative provision (AP), we look at how processes need to change to ensure the system more effectively supports these pupils.

This includes a need to improve the Education, Health and Care Plan (EHCP) process, in particular with regards to diagnosis and labelling, and to support practitioners to work more effectively with families.

First of all, the EHCP process needs updating. While the SEND code of practice suggests actively involving the child and parents, our research suggests the child’s voice is often not captured where it could be. Research from Tyan and Van Herwegen suggests the voices of children with intellectual disabilities as young as five years old can be accurately captured when professionals have appropriate training. This highlights the (more…)

SEND Green Paper: how can we update the system to improve children and young people’s experiences and outcomes?

By Blog Editor, IOE Digital, on 23 September 2022

Photo: olly via Adobe Stock

 Jo Van Herwegen and Miriam McBreen.

Children and young people with Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND) too often report negative experiences of the UK educational system, and have poorer outcomes compared to their peers.

Responding to the Department for Education’s Green Paper on the future of special educational needs and disabilities (SEND) and alternative provision (AP), we consider how provision can be improved to ensure that more children and young people have positive educational experiences, as well as better outcomes.

In the first of three blogs, we propose ways to improve standards for supporting children with SEND, both during their time in school and beyond.

First of all, standards should be established to support pupils with SEND during transitions, such as the move from primary (more…)

IOE at 120: how philosophy of education addressed ideas and values at the heart of the debate – 1962-1972

By Blog Editor, IOE Digital, on 28 July 2022

A 'child-centred' primary classroom from the 1960s

Progressive educational ideas and practice were highly influential : ‘child-centred’ primary classroom in the 1960s

This blog is the seventh in a series of 12 exploring each decade in IOE’s history in the context of the education and society of the times. Find out more about our 120th anniversary celebrations on our website, and follow us on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook and LinkedIn to keep up with everything that’s happening. 

Judith Suissa.

John Dewey argued that philosophy could be understood as “the general theory of education”, and philosophy has always played a central role in teaching and research at IOE. Indeed, IOE is regarded as one of the leading centres for Philosophy of Education in the world.

The decade from 1962-1971 is often regarded as the heyday of British philosophy of education, when what came to be known as ‘the London school’ was crystalised at IOE. This was a period when teacher training courses included lectures and seminars in the ‘foundation disciplines’ of (more…)

IOE at 120: Empire, decolonisation, modernisation and dislocation – 1952-1962

By Blog Editor, IOE Digital, on 24 June 2022

Beryl Gilroy with her pupils; she was given an honorary fellowship in 2000

Beryl Gilroy at Beckford primary school in north London in 1971. Photograph: Beryl Gilroy Estate

This blog is the sixth in a series of 12 exploring each decade in IOE’s history in the context of the education and society of the times. Find out more about our 120th anniversary celebrations on our website, and follow us on TwitterInstagramFacebook and LinkedIn to keep up with everything that’s happening.

Elaine Unterhalter.

Many historical strands weave through the 1950s, but the end of Empire and grappling with what colonial education and decolonisation entailed were key themes at IOE.

Understanding the 1950s at IOE requires trying to bring together two threads: inclusive education for modernising societies and the relationships of colonialism, built on economic and political dispossession associated with slavery, land seizure, economic exploitation, racial discrimination and cultural hierarchy.

The involvement of IOE with Britain’s colonial projects stretches back to the 1920s. A Colonial Department was formally established in 1927, aiming to train teachers and support education policy work for the Colonial Office. In 1952, as part of a series of lectures organised to mark the Golden Jubilee anniversary of IOE, Sir Christopher Cox, educational adviser to the Colonial Office, delivered a lecture celebrating the ‘increasing importance’ of (more…)

Balancing honesty with hope: new centre will help teachers build-in climate change education

By Blog Editor, IOE Digital, on 16 June 2022

Alison Kitson.

Few can doubt that the climate emergency is the defining issue of our time.  The most recent IPCC report confirms that without immediate and deep emissions reductions across all sectors, limiting global warming to 1.5°C is beyond reach with potentially profound implications for life on our planet.

In this context it is no surprise to read in research commissioned by UCL’s new Centre for Climate Change and Sustainability Education (CCCSE) that climate change – and education about climate change – is an important issue to parents, teachers, school leaders and young people. What is more surprising is how many of the students and teachers participating in the research feel that schools are not always doing enough to educate young people about all aspects of climate change and the possibilities of more sustainable lifestyles.

Public First, who carried out this research, polled more than 1,000 parents, the first time we believe parents have been asked (more…)

ITT Market Review: excellent science teaching needs skills in overcoming misconceptions

By Blog Editor, IOE Digital, on 5 April 2022

Marian Mulcahy.

The National Curriculum states that the purpose of science education is to provide a foundation ‘for understanding the world’ and that it is essential for ‘the world’s future prosperity’. It can safely be argued that these aims, whatever is thought of them, cannot be met within the confines of a school classroom or lab, but they do highlight the importance that is placed on students experiencing a really high-quality science education.  This in turn can only be achieved through exceptional teaching.

We have a very clear vision of what that teaching should look like, from the crucial point of view of the pupils.  Exceptional science teachers are those: (more…)

IOE at 120: Seeking the best way to educate the ‘whole child’, 1922-1932

By Blog Editor, IOE Digital, on 30 March 2022

Nazlin Bhimani.

This blog is the third in a series of 12 exploring each decade in IOE’s history in the context of the education and society of the times. Find out more about our 120th anniversary celebrations on our website, and follow us on TwitterInstagramFacebook and LinkedIn to keep up with everything that’s happening.

By 1922, Prime Minister Lloyd George’s declaration that the men would be coming home to a ‘land fit for heroes’ rang hollow. The initial euphoria that gripped the nation in the aftermath of the First World War quickly dissipated as the enormity of the destructive capacity of the war in human and economic terms was realised. Some 750,000 British men were killed or wounded, the number of widows rose to c1.6 million, and just over 730,000 children lost their fathers. Families suffered extreme poverty as unemployment averaged 64 percent.

Britain’s relatively undereducated citizenry, in comparison with her European and International competitors, was seen as a growing liability in terms of the nation’s financial health and the future of the empire. With the passing of the People’s Representation Act in 1918 (and later the Reform Act in 1928), which extended franchise, the need for an educated citizenry became more imperative. To meet the demands of a new, modern world, the 1918 Education (Fisher) Act embodied the notion of creating a responsible and informed citizen. Though raising the school leaving age to 14 was achieved, the Act failed to meet its other targets when the Geddes ‘axe’ drastically reduced the (more…)