Three weeks into term, most primary schools seem to be feeling reasonably happy with the introduction of the new curriculum, retaining fair chucks of the old NC in some cases, moving completely to the new curriculum in others.
But there's a big but: what to do about assessment.
Scrapping NC levels is issue number one - should schools carry on using them or start with something new? If the latter, what on Earth could it be? We've speculated and shared schools' thoughts on this in earlier blogs (see Archive) - and the answer so far is: errr....
More difficult SATs is another issue which will clobber schools with relative low previous performance in particular, and schools are very worried about this. Obviously, all schools will be in the same boat, but the effects of the new SATs will be impossible to predict and schools will, this time in the next few years, find themselves taking very close looks at where they went 'wrong'.
The new floor standards and progress measures are also a great unknown which we have expressed our teachers' concerns about previously (see Archive), but there is another issue which schools have barely thought about yet, that will lead to a major change in thinking.
When Schoolzone reached its 10th birthday, we started to sponsor 10 children in Uganda and we've taken great pleasure in seeing them grow and learn over the intervening six years. Fahadi, for example, has just learned how to tell the time and now wants to be a policeman - he likes the white bicycles!
Anyway, we also do what we can, as a small company, to support charities both locally (eg we hosted a Brekkie for Winston's Wish) and nationally, by offering advice and help wherever we can. For example, this week we're running some free webinars which are intended to help charities to understand how schools are responding to the various reforms which are currently rolling through schools. These are based on our ongoing research programme with our 80,000 teachers.