“Money” to be taught in schools – with a lesson on state spending

Financial education has been confirmed as an official part of the English national curriculum, including lessons on the public finances.

Children will be taught how to manage their money in schools for the first time in England, after financial education was included in the final version of the national curriculum.

The detail was published last night by the Department for Education and includes financial education in mathematics and citizenship education for secondary school pupils.

There have been further elements added since a draft curriculum earlier in the year opened to consultation, including lessons in how public money is raised and spent.

Personal finance is already taught in schools in Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland.

In Mathematics, “financial mathematics” is emphasised for the first time. Pupils will be asked to solve problems involving percentage change and simple interest, for example.

Pupils will learn to manage their money and plan for future financial decisions in citizenship classes, which will also include lessons in financial products and how public money is raised through measures like income tax, according to the published curriculum.

The curriculum will be rolled out across all government-funded, or maintained, schools, from September 2014.

Tracey Bleakley, pfeg chief executive, said: “It is especially welcome to see the link between personal finance and public finances restored to the final programmes of study for Citizenship education.

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Most children worry about bullying at secondary school

Children starting secondary school are most concerned about being bullied for being too clever or not clever enough, a survey has found. Beatbullying and Parentdish have launched an online guide for parents.

The poll of more than 800 eight- to 15-year-olds by the charity BeatBullying and parenting website Parentdish found other common concerns about starting a new school include keeping up with homework, finding their way around school and making new friends. It found that 58 per cent of primary school pupils were worried about being bullied when they start secondary school.

BeatBullying and Parentdish have produced an online guide that offers parents advice on how to spot whether their child is being bullied and what can be done to stop it.

Emma-Jane Cross, chief executive of BeatBullying, said schools can help children by having a “buddy” or “peer mentor” scheme in place. “Many children are worried about moving from primary to secondary school,” she said. “It’s a hugely exciting time – with a new school, new teachers and new classmates – but it can also be very scary.”

Too few qualified teachers mean one in 10 primary schools likely to miss language targets

A shortage of qualified teachers means that one in 10 primary schools believe they are unlikely to be able to deliver on the Government’s pledge to make learning a language compulsory for all seven-year-olds from next year. classroom setting

Almost a quarter (23 per cent) say they currently have no-one on their staff with language qualifications beyond GCSE, although some of these think they will nevertheless be able to deliver the required level of teaching.

“Schools have least confidence in their ability to deliver the more technical and rigorous aspects of language teaching – including reading, writing and grammatical understanding,” says a report published yesterday [Wed].

The findings emerge in the annual survey of language provision in schools published by the CfBT Education Trust which says that, while foreign language teaching is now a reality in most primary schools – there is a lack of consistency in both approach and outcomes, making it difficult for secondary schools to build on pupils’ learning.

Figures show a slight improvement in the proportion of pupils taking up languages at GCSE (41 per cent of pupils, up 1 per cent on the previous year) although because of a fall in student numbers, this is actually fewer pupils than before.

The report also finds that that opinion amongst teachers is divided as to whether the subject should again become compulsory for 14 to 16-year-olds. Compulsory lessons for this age group were scrapped by Labour nearly a decade ago.

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