The Festival of Education is held at Wellington College (Berkshire) from 21st to 22nd June 2018 and brings together up to 5000 festival goers – including England’s leading influencers, politicians, journalists, business leaders, practitioners and policy-makers.
EPI will be operating an Education Policy Strand – a dedicated space at the heart of the festival, which will facilitate discussion and share the latest research on leading issues in education.
Confirmed panel events for this year include:
‘What does a high quality early years workforce look like?’
During this policy session EPI Associate Director of Early Years Development, Sara Bonetti will provide an insight into the current early years workforce landscape and will discuss key recent policy developments. This includes identifying the key characteristics of the workforce, such as the level of qualification, and key trends and challenges, such as recruitment and retention. Sara will also present potential policy solutions to these challenges and will examine which evidence gaps remain.
‘Is England’s school system delivering?’
EPI Director of School System and Performance, Jon Andrews, will discuss whether significant structural reform has delivered improved standards in education and if the new approach from the Secretary of State offers something better. He will draw on EPI’s detailed programme of work on the school system including academies and free schools, access to good school places, and school accountability. It will include findings from EPI’s latest report, published in May – which provides a directly comparable analysis of the performance of individual multi-academy-trusts and local authorities using 2017 data.
‘In conversation with… Mark Lehain’
We talk to one of the original proponents of free schools programme and founder of the Bedford Free School, Mark Lehain, on his reflections of the programme so far, which direction he thinks it will take next, and his priorities as Director of Parents and Teachers for Excellence. We will also hear more about Mark’s own education background and views on life. This session will be chaired by EPI Executive Director, Natalie Perera.
‘SEND: Is there a postcode lottery for access to support, and can we quantify this?’
EPI Director of Social Mobility & Vulnerable Learners, Jo Hutchinson, will be presenting her initial findings from Pupil special educational needs and disabilities: identification, access and patterns of mental health support, this will include analysis on which groups of children are most likely to be identified in school as having SEND. The evidence will also reveal how the chances for children and young people who need to access SEND and mental health support vary across England, as well as trends in these patterns over time. A panel discussion will follow the presentation, featuring Karen Iles (Achievement for All) and Jonathan Reid (Oxford Brookes University).
‘Government or Schools: who can solve the teaching crisis?’
We talk to a panel of experts to hear their take on what can be done through government policy and by schools to support and motivate teachers and leaders to stay in the profession amid stagnant pay and increased workload. Panelists include: Katie Waldegrave (Now Teach); Anna Trethway (LKMco); Samantha Twiselton (Sheffield Institute of Education) and David Weston (Teacher Development Trust).