Category Archives: SCHOOLS


The European Civil Society Platform on Lifelong Learning website:

focussed on a full press release article dated 12 July 2013 about the Spanish government’s proposal in draft form “Education Act for the Improvement of Educational Quality”.  The Spanish Government intend to suppress Education for Democratic Citizenship and Human Rights in primary, secondary and baccalaureate programmes.  This directly contradicts Spain’s commitments towards the Council of Europe.

In view of the economic, social and institutional crisis, this is not conducive to moving democracy forward.  This draft proposal, if agreed and finalised, will take Spain back in time and exasperate the next generation’s effort to discuss and make decisions in a democratic manner.   Young people should be given the opportunity to express themselves freely, discuss and debate topics in the school environment without fear of reprisals.  Through positive dialogue, acceptance of each other and trust in one’s ability will arouse the desire to make a difference in society.

The aim of the Spanish government should not just rest at educating followers but rather to develop and encourage aspirations for future leaders.


Teachers Who Bully

Teachers Who Bully

Normal scenario is a child being bullied by another child – but what happens when it is the teacher bullying?

We need to define what teacher bullying is.

  • The teacher uses power to punish, manipulate a situation, or disparage a student beyond what is considered to be a reasonable disciplinary procedure.
  • The teacher bad mouths the student (in the lunchroom or teachers’ room) to other teachers.
  • Other students may notice that “he/she picks on your son/daughter”.
  • An insecure teacher e.g. who has problems expressing himself in the students’ native language may bully kids out of envy.
  • The teacher may be suffering from personal problems e.g. dealing with parent e-mail enquiries and starts bullying their child in retaliation.
  • Sadistist teacher:  May get pleasure out of humiliating students, hurting students feeling and being spiteful.
  • Teachers who bully may have been bullied in their childhood.


I certainly have been learning a lot about education since the last time I uploaded a post which regrettably was about five months ago!

I’m talking about subjects generally taught in schools.  Has anyone ever wondered how much time should be allocated teaching individual subjects?  I think that this question should be addressed when transferring knowledge, skills and habits to the next generation as well as analyzing school examination results in consideration of core and non-core subjects.

Core subjects:

  • Mathematics
  • English
  • Science

So in search of information, I came across the TES FAQ weblink which gives a guideline of the number of hours that should be taught of each subjects in KS1, KS2 and KS3:

KS1 Curriculum Time

Subject Recommended time per week* Total hours over year Percentage of a
21-hour teaching week
English 5 – 7½ hours 180 – 270 24% – 36%
Mathematics 3¾ hours 135 18%
Science 1½ hours 54 7%
ICT 50 minutes 30 4%
D&T 50 minutes 30 4%
History 50 minutes 30 4%
Geography 50 minutes 30 4%
Art & Design 50 minutes 30 4%
Music 50 minutes 30 4%
PE 1¼ hours 45 6%
RE 1 hour 36 5%


17½ – 20 hours 630 – 720 hours 84% – 96%

KS2 Curriculum Time

Subject Recommended time per week* Total hours over year Percentage of a
23½-hour teaching week
English 5 – 7½ hours 180 – 270 21% – 32%
Mathematics 4¼ – 5 hours 150 – 180 18 – 21%
Science 2 hours 72 9%
ICT 55 minutes 33 4%
D&T 55 minutes 33 4%
History 55 minutes 33 4%
Geography 55 minutes 33 4%
Art & Design 55 minutes 33 4%
Music 55 minutes 33 4%
PE 1¼ hours 45 5%
RE 1¼ hours 45 5%


19¼ – 22 hours 690 – 810 hours 82% – 96%

KS3 Curriculum Time

Subject Recommended time per week* Total hours over year Percentage of a
21-hour teaching week
English 3 hours 108 12%
Mathematics 3 hours 108 12%
Science 3 hours 108 12%
ICT 1 hour 36 4%
D&T 1½ hours 54 6%
History 1¼ hours 45 5%
Geography 1¼ hours 45 5%
Modern Languages 2 hours 72 8%
Art & Design 1 hour 36 4%
Music 1 hour 36 4%
PE 1½ hours 54 6%
Citizenship 45 minutes 27 3%
RE 1¼ hours 45 5%


21½ hours 774 hours 86%

Hove School Governor wins National Acclaim

From the Brighton and Hove News – Independent city news and views

A former Mayor of Brighton and Hove who chairs the board of governors at two local schools has won national recognition.

Jenny Barnard-Langston has been appointed a national leader for governance. She is the first in Brighton and Hove and one of just 130 across the country.

The Department for Education describes national leaders for governance as “highly effective chairs of governors, who use their skills and experience to support chairs of governors in other schools and academies”. The role includes mentoring and giving advice.

Mrs Barnard-Langston chairs the board of governors at Blatchington Mill School in Hove, where she has been a governor since 2002, and Benfield Primary School in Portslade.

Jenny Barnard-Langston

Jenny Barnard-Langston

As a councillor, she chaired the East Sussex County Council Education Committee. During her 20 years as a councillor, she also served on Hove Borough Council and Brighton and Hove City Council.

She previously chaired the governors at Patcham High School, in Brighton, Somerhill Junior School, in Hove, and Cuckmere House School in Seaford.

She has also served as a governor at Davigdor Infant School and Hove Park School, in Hove, and she chaired the corporation board of Lewes Tertiary College, now Sussex Downs College.

She said: “I am delighted to take up this role as national leader of governance.”

Cambridge International Exams

Home | News | Waterford pupil is the best in the world

Waterford pupil is the best in the world

30/05/2013 03:43:00BY SIBUSISO ZWANE
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imageArnaz Patel.

MBABANE – A pupil from Waterford Kamhlaba United World College has topped the world in Cambridge IGCSE Foreign Language, Spanish.

Arnaz Patel received an Outstanding Cambridge Learner Award from Cambridge International Examinations for her outstanding performance in the November, 2012 Cambridge Examinations series.

Patel got an average of 99 per cent in a series of four Spanish papers. She said she could not believe it when she got the news that she was the best in the world.
“I feel very happy. I didn’t expect this when I was writing that exam,” she said. She also said what surprised her the most was that the exam seemed harder than the practice papers they had been writing in preparation.

Describing her work ethic, Patel said: “I do not overwork myself. I only do my work. I am not the type of person who wouldn’t have time for other things and I balance my schedule.”
The acting Principal of Waterford Kamhlaba, Bruce Wells, said the award recognised the talent, dedication and commitment for both the learners and staff.

He also said this was the second year in succession that a Waterford Kamhlaba pupil has been recognised for acquiring the best result in the subject.
Wells also paid special tribute to Patricia O’Connor from Chile, Patel’s Spanish teacher, for teaching her and preparing her well for the examinations. O’Connor described Patel’s achievement as a great one for herself and the school.

“She has made a great achievement and in Swaziland this is the only school that teaches Spanish as an accelerated course,” O’Connor said.
She also made mention that Patel was a special pupil who speaks fluent French, English, siSwati, and Portuguese.

Cyrus Patel, Arnaz’s father, congratulated her daughter and said the whole family was proud of her achievement.
“We are ecstatic about it. It is quite an achievement for her and an honour for the family,” he said.
The top performing learner received her award during a ceremony yesterday at Waterford Kamhlaba.

Cambridge Top in the World awards recognises the success of learners who have achieved the highest standard mark in the world for a single subject.
Cambridge programmes are taken by learners in more than 9 000 schools in 160 countries.

Are Some A-Level Subjects Better Than Others

education_iconWhen I attended the Wulfrun College of Further Education in Wolverhampton, I took what was then called the ‘Advanced Ordinary’ Level.  I’m wondering whether it was a con because hardly anyone I know have ever heard of it.  But it did actually exist in the 1970s!

So now I turn my focus to ‘A’ Levels which is something we can all identify with!

Located on the small island of Tenerife – it is rather hard to understand the significance of  ‘A’ Levels when competing internationally with other students.  Yes, there is a big world out there and considerable thought has to be given to the actual university.

Many Year 11 students will be making important decisions about what ‘A’ Levels to choose.  And of course, some might decide to take “easier” subjects rather than the “harder” subjects!  But should the focus be on what subjects will steer you to your career choice?

According to the Nick Morrison article in The Telegraph 7.00 am GMT 23 March 2013 – if a subject does not interest you – then you are less likely to achieve top grades.

This is an example of the current London School of Economics (LSE)  list of non-preferred A-level subjects:

  • Accounting
  • Art and Design
  • Business Studies
  • Communication Studies
  • Design and Technology
  • Drama/Theatre Studies
  • Home Economics
  • Information and Communication Technology
  • Law
  • Media Studies
  • Music Technology
  • Sport Studies
  • Travel and Tourism

As opposed to the Trinity College, Cambridge:  A Levels suitable only as fourth subjects:

  • Accounting
  • Applied Science
  • Citizenship
  • Communication Studies
  • Critical Thinking
  • Dance
  • Environmental Science
  • General Studies
  • Health and Social Care
  • Home Economics
  • ICT
  • Leisure Studies
  • Music Technology
  • Performance Studies
  • Performing Arts
  • Perspectives on Science
  • Photography
  • Physical Education
  • Science
  • Sciece for Public Understanding
  • Sports Studies
  • Travel and Tourism
  • World Development

The subject choice will be complicated!  Read the whole article at the below link:

Schooling and Education in Spain

For the expats arriving with children to mainland Spain and the Canary islands, the question of education and which schools to choose is a life-changing decision, more so when the ability to speak Spanish or lack of- is ultimately the decider.   Please click the below “schooling-education” . . .


The School System

Spanish Guarderia Escuela Infantil Primaria ESO Universidad
English Nursery school Pre-school Primary school Secondary school Higher education
Ages Age 0-3 Age 3-6 Age 6-12 Age 12-16 From 16