It is a bit trite, but no less true to say that teachers are often very passionate about the role they play in providing young people with opportunities to learn, grow and achieve their goals. Equality of opportunity is at the heart of so much of what we do.  Whilst great strides have been made in recent decades to widen access to education and provide young people with equitable routes into careers of their choosing, there are still obstacles and inequalities to be removed.

In this issue, David Butler and Ian Marcouse highlight two such iniquities.  David Butler reviews IFS research which indicates some of the potential educational barriers faced by different groups, especially women in pursuing careers in economics.  Ian Marcouse focuses on extra time in exams and reflects on data indicating significant unexplained differences in the number of students benefitting from extra exam time between schools, including between state and independent schools.

Following Sam Stones and Kathy Cameron’s excellent article on curriculum sequencing in the last issue, Madeleine Court from Repton School shares her own reflections on the potential barriers to learning created following the sequence of specifications religiously. Madeleine explains how she re-sequenced her GCSE Business curriculum to ensure students had both the threshold concepts and schema to ensure a deeper understanding of subsequent topics.

Building on previous articles in this journal on cognitive load theory and the implications for learning design, Peter Imeson describes what he has learnt from his own research into the subject and how he has adjusted his teaching. In particular he focuses on his explanations of basic knowledge and concepts and explains how he uses images and verbal narrative together to increase students’ recall.  Feedback from members over the years suggests this is the sort of reflective enhancement they find so helpful in developing their own practice.

If you are a regular visitor to the EBEA website you will have noticed our new section devoted to new and student teachers. The EBEA recognizes that, especially with so much more school-led ITT it is more important than ever that it provides advice and guidance to new teachers. If you are involved in teacher training and would like to join the EBEA’s new ITT group contact Dr Jo Bentham the EBEA Chair on chair@ebea.org.uk.

In this issue you will find the first in our series of special features for new and student teachers. To kick things off, Helena Knapton, co-author of Teaching Business, Economics and Enterprise 14-19, explains why she wrote her book, how she hopes readers can get the most out of it and shares some initial thoughts on the importance of assessment and AfL.

With so much uncertainty surrounding UK trade post-Brexit, Marwan Mikdadi provides a revealing analysis of the UK’s export record and future potential. Following the much hoped for UK-EU Trade Agreement (though not currently ratified by the EU parliament) Russ Woodward and Tim Veal share a variety of approaches to assessment for different RQF levels.

Enjoy the summer term – whatever it holds for you as things return to the new normal!

Gareth

Gareth can be contacted at
editor@ebea.org.uk