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Lifting Our Heads features in national press September 30, 2013

Posted by Jonathan Barnes, editor in Independent Education, New releases.
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Lifting Our Heads

Our forthcoming book, Lifting Our Heads, is given some coverage in The Daily Telegraph today.

The book is written by Alex McGrath, Head of King’s Ely Senior, and is subtitled ‘The challenge facing our schools: a call to arms for the independent sector’.

The newspaper’s Educator Editor Graeme Paton wrote this piece on the book, focusing on the ‘affordability’ issue of independent schools:


Please do have a look at this piece, written by Alex McGrath, for a more holistic view of what the book is about:


Lifting Our Heads will be available in mid-October. For pre-orders, please visit our bookshop.

New issue of Conference & Common Room – online and in print September 27, 2013

Posted by Jonathan Barnes, editor in Independent Education, Magazines.
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C&CR 50.3

The autumn issue of Conference & Common Room magazine is now available – in print and online.

Subscribers and schools will soon be receiving their copies, and you can read the e-zine at www.candcr.co.uk.

Conference & Common Room is the magazine for leading independent schools and includes contributions from across the independent school sector.

If you would like to contribute to the magazine, please contact editor Tom Wheare at tom@dunbry.plus.com.

For subscriptions, please visit our bookshop.

For any advertising enquiries, please contact Madeleine Anderson at manderson@johncatt.com or on 01394 389855.

Pre-order new titles from John Catt: Taking Forward the Primary Curriculum and Lifting Our Heads September 27, 2013

Posted by Jonathan Barnes, editor in New releases.
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We are delighted to announce two exciting new titles that are available for pre-order. Both will be released in mid-October.

Taking Forward the Primary Curriculum is edited by Roy Blatchford, director of the National Education Trust.

This book has a simple intent. In September 2014, primary schools in England will be expected to adopt a new National Curriculum. There is good time to prepare, and this book shows you how.

The authors’ reflections come from varying perspectives: teachers, Headteachers, directors of foundations and leading thinkers on education, each of whom is involved in the work of the National Education Trust, an independent charitable foundation which champions best practice.

Contributors include: Kate Atkins; Roy Blatchford; Tim Coulson; Kate Dethridge; Professor Deborah Eyre; Kate Frood; Dr Neil Hawkes; Richard Howard; Peter Hyman; Pamela Matty; Chris Nourse; Katy Peters; Laurence Pitt; Will Power; Jane Ratcliffe; Dave Smith; Rob Stokoe; Kathy Wood; and Chris Yapp.

Each order for this book comes with a FREE copy of The National Curriculum in England: Key stages 1 and 2 framework document, published by the DfE in September 2013.

Pre-order Taking Forward the Primary Curriculum here.

Lifting Our Heads is subtitled ‘The challenge facing our schools: a call to arms for the independent sector’. It is written by Alex McGrath, Head of King’s Ely Senior. We’re delighted to report it has already received an excellent response within the school community.

This book looks at the rise of the ‘educational consumer’ – parents who know what they want and expect value for their money and asks how schools continue to deliver the best education money can buy?

The author travelled the length and breadth of England to canvass the views of his colleagues. With remarkable honesty, these Headteachers share their views about the challenges facing the independent sector: from Government attacks, Press misrepresentation, demanding parents, and rising prices. What emerges is a vivid picture of the diversity and challenge of leading schools today.

Pre-order Lifting Our Heads here.

New issue of Prep School magazine is out now September 26, 2013

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The new issue of Prep School magazine is out now for the new term.

Copies will soon be arriving with schools and subscribers and you can read the e-zine at the magazine’s new website at www.prepschoolmag.co.uk.

The autumn issue has a theme of ‘Embracing the challenges’ and looks at enrichment, sustainability, school trips and ‘gifted and talented’.

Here’s editor Michele Kitto’s introduction to the new issue:

“The summer holidays often give us a chance to take stock, switch off and catch up with all the things that get pushed out during a busy term. As school starts again, our greatest challenge can be to retain that work–life balance. Shall we see if we can all continue with just one of the activities we discovered – or rediscovered – over the summer?

“Some of you will be the new girl or boy in the staffroom this term. Or maybe you are mentoring an NQT, welcoming an experienced teacher to your team, or adjusting to life with a new Head teacher? Change goes hand-in-hand with the start of the new academic year and, even if none of the above applies, you cannot help seeing your curriculum with refreshed eyes after the summer break. In which case, I hope the articles on citizenship and sustainability might inspire you to try to weave these very relevant subjects into your teaching.

“How many of us speak from the same ‘script’, year after year? Somehow, those tried and tested lesson plans resurface over and over again, unchanged. They are familiar and reassuring; tried and tested. They are not broken; they do not need fixing. Well, maybe. On the other hand, when we teach something new, or in a different way, we often find we perform right at the top of our game. Energy and enthusiasm are our greatest teaching aids and most of us will have seen the effect that a new approach can bring to the classroom. Admittedly, it takes time and inspiration to make changes to our teaching but the results are very worthwhile. Regretfully, Prep School is unable to create more hours in the day but we really do try to help with the inspiration side of things.

“With the diversity and depth of education that our sector offers, it is very easy to forget that our job is to enrich the educational experience of all our pupils, not just the ‘gifted and talented’. In this issue, you will find a SEN feature and Q&A column, as well as articles on enrichment and GT so you can do just this. While parents and pupils struggle to accept that not everyone can be in the top 10 per cent, we need to remember that education is about finding out what each child does best, stretching them in the areas they find easy, and supporting with the things they find hard. Moving mountains and transfiguration are not yet on the curriculum but preparing children for their future lives is the absolute basis of our work.

“Don’t forget to celebrate the wonderful work you are doing in your school by keeping in touch, as so many of you do.”

If you would like to contribute to Prep School, you can contact Michele at editor@prepschoolmag.co.uk.

For subscriptions, please visit our bookshop.

For any advertising enquiries, please contact Madeleine Anderson atmanderson@johncatt.com or on 01394 389855.

Michael Gove writes in new issue of Academy magazine – available now in print and online September 25, 2013

Posted by Jonathan Barnes, editor in Magazines, Uncategorized.
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The new issue of Academy magazine is now available and copies will be arriving with schools and subscribers this week.

You can read the e-zine at the magazine’s new website at www.academymag.co.uk.

The issue looks ahead to next year’s General Election and beyond and the possible implications for our schools.

It features an article by Education Secretary Michael Gove, who writes that academies are using their independence to drive real improvement in the schools around them.

The autumn issue also includes the usual mix of news and features, with articles on: staff, training, pay and conditions; funding; governance; curriculum and learning; partnerships; and buildings. facilities and procurement.

The magazine is produced in partnership with FASNA (Freedom and Autonomy for Schools – National Association) and the new issue includes information on FASNA membership and details of the new Effective Governance book.

Effective Governance is also a John Catt/FASNA publication which has received an excellent response from the school community. It looks at best practice linked to Ofsted guidelines and features case studies from a variety of schools. You can order it here.

For editorial enquiries regarding Academy magazine, please contact editor Peter Beaven at editor@academy.mag.co.uk.

For subscriptions please visit our bookshop.

For any advertising enquiries, please contact Madeleine Anderson at manderson@johncatt.com or on 01394 389855.

New issue of International School (is) magazine out now – online and in print September 24, 2013

Posted by Jonathan Barnes, editor in International education, Magazines.
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isMag 16.1

The autumn issue of International School (is) magazine is out now – and will be distributed to more schools than ever before.

Copies are currently being sent out to schools and subscribers – and the e-zine is available to read at www.is-mag.co.uk.

The new issue, which has a focus on the independent education sector in China, marks the start of a new era for is.

The magazine no longer appears as an official publication of ECIS, following a 15-year association. This, says publishing director Derek Bingham in his comment piece, is a ‘an amicable decision, taken jointly, and one that recognises two realities…

‘One is a need for ECIS to have dedicated channels for the increasing amount of information it needs to communicate to members. The other is a rapidly expanding international schools sector and the need for International School (is) magazine to cater for their diverse needs. Over the years the world of education has changed rapidly, making it increasingly difficult for the magazine to do the job for which it was originally founded.

‘The magazine’s role now will be to provide more coverage for more schools. Heads of ECIS schools will continue to receive their copies of is but it will go to many other international schools too. Links will be forged with organisations worldwide. There will be news and pictures of their activities; an extended calendar; regular coverage of curricular matters; and in-depth focuses. But it is readers’ ideas and experiences that continue to be vital.

‘As the pace of change increases so does running an international school become more specialised and complex. The skills and knowledge of those involved in governance, academic or business management, common rooms, extracurricular activities, strategies, marketing and the many activities that go into running a successful international school need to be shared. Happily that is the nature of those who work in them, and is magazine will continue to be there to help them share.’

Dr Caroline Ellwood remains the editor of is, and she is currently putting together the January edition, which has a theme of ‘Crossing the Divides’. If you would like to contribute, her email address is editor@is-mag.co.uk.

For subscriptions to is, please visit our bookshop.

For any advertising enquiries, please contact Madeleine Anderson on manderson@johncatt.com or 01394 389855.

New release from John Catt: Exploring Issues of Continuity September 9, 2013

Posted by Jonathan Barnes, editor in Independent Education, International education, New releases.
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Exploring Issues of Continuity Cover

We are pleased to introduce our new publication, Exploring Issues of Continuity: The International Baccalaureate in a wider context.

Edited by Mary Hayden and Jeff Thompson, this book follows on from the successful Taking It Forward series and is an important addition to existing literature on the IB.

It looks at ‘continuity’ across the IB programmes and more widely across the sphere of international education.

The notion of ‘continuity’ is contested and open to a range of interpretations. Mary Hayden and Jeff Thompson have brought together leading figures in international education, each of whom has contributed their own perspectives on the topic, borne out of personal experiences in implementing continuity in their professional work.

The organisation of the book allows a range of issues to be explored in three main areas: dimensions of continuity (major aspects of the topic which apply across differing curricula), supporting continuity (relating to those who have responsibility for implementing and monitoring continuity in an institutional context) and programme transition (illustrating transition between specific IB programmes).

While most authors focus exclusively on the IB programmes – Primary Years (PYP), Middle Years (MYP) and Diploma (DP) – some have considered issues of continuity relating to other programmes offered in the international education context.

Contributors include: Nick Alchin; Ochan Kusuma-Powell and William Powell; Anthony Hemmens; Jamie Large; David Harrison; Andrew Watson; Bev Shaklee and April Mattix; Darlene Fisher; Roger Marshman; Richard Parker and Gillian Ashworth.

To order a copy of Exploring Issues of Continuity, please visit our bookshop.


Amazing reviews for The OIQ Factor September 6, 2013

Posted by Alex, Managing Director in International education, New releases.
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The OIQ Factor

William Powell and Ochan Kusuma-Powell’s new book The OIQ Factor: Raising Your School’s Organizational Intelligence has only been published for a couple of weeks but it is already making an impression in the school community.

Here are a few of the reviews we have received from educators in the last week or so:

“Bill and Ochan have triumphed with this book; they explore and explode some of the myths and faulty assumptions that surround and bedevil our profession while simultaneously offering us a way to look at what educational leadership now and in the future needs to and should, focus upon.” —Ian Morris, Head, International School of Havana

“I read it from cover to cover with great joy! I shared large sections of the text with our staff and felt that it brought so many ideas together that have been tremendously helpful. Thank the heavens for this work and the authors’ commitment to bringing this material to our attention in such accessible ways. Simply fabulous!” —Mary-Lyn Campbell, Head, International Community School of Zurich

“Whether you are an experienced head or are just starting your career in school administration, you will find chapter after chapter filled with profound analysis, astute advice and case studies that resonate. There is an old Maori saying: ‘He aha te mea nui? He tangata. He tangata. He tangata.’ It translates as: ‘What is the most important thing? It is people, it is people, it is people.’ Above all else, this is what Bill and Ochan’s book confirms about schools.” —David Toze, Head of School, International School of Manila

The OIQ Factor can be ordered via www.johncattbookshop.com

Book on teaching ESL students is a ‘must-have’ for staffrooms September 5, 2013

Posted by Jonathan Barnes, editor in International education, John Catt Educational news.
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We are pleased to report brisk sales and an excellent review of one of our most recent publications, Breaking through the language barrier.

The book offers strategies for teaching English as a Second Language (ESL) students in mainstream classes.

It is written by Patricia Mertin, who has had a long and distinguished career in teaching ESL students.

Breaking through the language barrier is reviewed in the new issue of International School (is) magazine by Jackie Holderness, director of materials Development for Achievement for All.

Here are some excerpts from the review:

“Her (Mertin’s) wealth of experience working in ESL shines through and is the main strength of this book, and her depth and range of knowledge about second language acquisition are presented with a light touch, ensuring this book would appeal to any colleagues in international schools who wish to improve the education experience for their secondary or high school ESL students.

“Her empathy for the challenges facing ESL students is evident and she cites examples of students who have struggled and succeeded. With refreshing sensitively, Mertin shares with us the students’ comments, in the same raw state as they wrote or said them, grammatical warts and all.

“She provides valuable guidance for subject specialist teachers, so that colleagues in the science lab or gymnasium, the art department or the ICT suite appreciate ways to make their lessons more readily accessible.

“… this book is a ‘must-have’ for every secondary or high school staffroom, not only in international schools, but in any school where learners are having to tackle unfamiliar and cognitively challenging curriculum content through a second language.”

To order a copy of Breaking through the language barrier, visit our bookshop.