Cadet forces: funding and social impact

The cadet forces are voluntary youth organisations that are based on the traditions of the armed forces but are not part of them. The Government says they offer “challenging and enjoyable activities”. They receive some government funding. Independent analysis suggests that they provide benefits both for participants and wider society. An ongoing government scheme aims to increase the number of cadet units in state schools.

Cadet forces: funding and social impact

Educational and cultural exchange programmes

Educational and cultural exchange programmes have existed for many years. They provide individuals, such as students, with the opportunity to learn and experience cultures outside of their home country. This article discusses exchange programmes such as the Government’s new Turing Scheme and the impact that programmes can have on participants.

Educational and cultural exchange programmes

Public services: impact of the Covid-19 pandemic

In March 2020, the House of Lords Public Services Committee set up an inquiry into the impact of Covid-19 on public services which reported in November 2020. Among its findings, the committee identified five weaknesses highlighted by the pandemic that should be addressed to make public services resilient enough to withstand future crises. The committee’s recommendations also aimed to ‘lock-in’ innovations developed during the pandemic to reform public services over the longer-term.

Public services: impact of the Covid-19 pandemic
  • In Focus

    Foreign languages: skills in the workforce

    Surveys consistently indicate just under two in three Britons are unable to hold a conversation in a language other than their mother tongue. A number of organisations have drawn attention to this so-called ‘language deficit’ and its impact on trade and employment. This article looks at calls to improve language skills in England in the context of the Government’s ambition for a ‘Global Britain’.

  • In Focus

    Foreign languages: primary and secondary schools

    Ofsted, which inspects schools in England, has said languages are in a “pressured position” in primary and secondary education. Schools in England face challenges around both the quality of language provision and the take-up of languages by students. The Government has proposed changes to language GCSE subject content and assessment, but some have criticised the content and timing of proposals.

  • In Focus

    Early years and childcare fees regulations: regret motion

    The Early Years Foundation Stage (Miscellaneous Amendments) and Childcare Fees (Amendment) Regulations 2021 come into force on 1 September 2021. They introduce a reception baseline assessment (RBA) for children entering reception class; update the statutory framework that early years providers in England must follow; and continue certain annual registration fee arrangements. The House of Lords is set to debate a motion to regret the changes on the basis that introduction of the RBA should be delayed.

  • In Focus

    Education (Environment and Sustainable Citizenship) Bill [HL]

    Students are currently taught about climate change and the environment in several different subjects, for example science and geography. In September 2020, a report by the UK Climate Assembly included the recommendation that climate change should be made a compulsory subject in all schools. The Education (Environment and Sustainable Citizenship) Bill [HL] would make climate change and sustainable citizenship part of the national curriculum taught in maintained schools in England.

  • In Focus

    Elective home education: time for a compulsory register?

    Instances of parents choosing to educate their children at home, known as elective home education, are increasing. These increases have led to concern about the nature of education some children are receiving outside of school. Some groups have called for the Government to establish a mandatory register of all home educated children. This article will look at the issue of elective home education in England in more detail, and explain the Government’s current position on a compulsory register.

  • In Focus

    Higher Education Cheating Services Prohibition Bill [HL]

    The Higher Education Cheating Services Prohibition Bill is a private member’s bill sponsored by Lord Storey. It would make it an offence to provide or advertise cheating services to students enrolled at higher education providers in England. The House of Lords is scheduled to debate the bill at second reading on 25 June 2021.

  • In Focus

    Covid-19: impact on child poverty and on young people’s education, health and wellbeing

    Concerns have been raised about the impact on young people of many of the measures taken to control the spread of coronavirus. This article explores the potential impact on education, health and poverty levels, and what the Government are doing to mitigate these concerns. It has been prepared in advance of a House of Lords debate scheduled for 17 June 2021.

  • In Focus

    Arts education in secondary schools

    Recent Department of Education statistics show reductions in the number of hours spent teaching some arts subjects in secondary schools. The situation has worsened with the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic, with much arts teaching reduced or stopped during lockdown. The 2019 Conservative manifesto included commitments to an “arts premium” for the funding of the arts, music and sports. The Government recently reiterated its commitment to arts subjects, saying they are “vital parts of children and young people’s education”.

  • Research Briefing

    Skills and Post-16 Education Bill [HL]: Briefing for Lords Stages

    The Skills and Post-16 Education Bill [HL] makes provision to implement policies set out in the Government’s 'Skills for Jobs' white paper, published in January 2021. Key aims include improving employers’ involvement in planning for local training provision and enabling flexible access to further education and training for adults irrespective of age. The House of Lords is due to debate the bill at second reading on 15 June 2021.

  • In Focus

    Ethnicity and child poverty

    Recent research by the Office for National Statistics (ONS) has suggested that poverty can have a serious impact on a child’s life chances, and that this burden is felt disproportionately by those from certain ethnic groups. This article examines those findings, as well as recent campaigns to tackle the related issue of child food poverty.

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