A Good School for Every Child
How to improve our schools
By Cyril Taylor
Foreword by David Blunkett MP, Kenneth Baker
Contributors: Christine Walter, Jane Ware
Routledge – 2009 – 212 pages
Sir Cyril Taylor has been at the heart of English education for over two decades, serving as an adviser to ten successive UK Education Secretaries and Four Prime Ministers, both Conservative and Labour, including Margaret Thatcher and Tony Blair.
His passion for education has led directly to real school improvement, from the creation of City Technology Colleges to specialist schools and academies, which together now constitute over nine in ten secondary schools in England. The Specialist Schools and Academies Trust, the body he founded, is now a leading force in school improvement worldwide.
A Good School for Every Child draws on that wealth of experience. While offering an insider's look at some of the key challenges in education, it is also an invaluable guide for parents and teachers interested in how our schools work today. There is a particular focus on how to raise standards in low attaining schools, improving levels of literacy and numeracy and teaching our children the skills they need for the 21st Century.
This book is also a clarion call to our political leaders about the challenges that still remain: the education of children in care, the failure to stretch able youngsters and the problems recruiting enough good science teachers.
Education is more open today than ever before, with league tables and inspection reports. Yet for many outsiders, it can seem a world clouded by its own language and rituals. Cyril Taylor opens the door to that world, through stories of inspirational headteachers and successful schools. By doing so he offers a vision that is both instructive and inspirational, one that shows how schools working with parents and the wider community can raise the standards of achievement for all their pupils.
About the Author - Short biography Dedication Table of Contents Disclaimer Foreword by Lord Baker of Dorking and the Rt. Hon. David Blunkett MP Introduction Acknowledgements List of Abbreviations 1. What makes a good school? 2. How to choose a good school for your child 3. Why we need to empower our headteachers 4. Why we must improve standards of literacy 5. How to ensure that all English 16 and 17 year-olds remain in full time education or training 6. How to improve low-attaining schools 7. Are academies a good thing? 8. Halting the demise of the United Kingdom’s science and engineering base 9. How information communications technology (ICT) can be used to improve learning 10. How specialist schools have helped to raise standards in English secondary schools 11. Why our schools should become centres of community life 12. How we can better integrate our ethnic minorities into their communities? 13. Are Schools with a religious character a good thing? 14. Who will champion our vulnerable children? 15. Why and how all our gifted and talented children should be nurtured 16. What lessons can we learn from other countries which have high standards in their schools? 17. Could the British education reforms be introduced into the United States? Appendix 1: Example of a Parent/School Agreement Appendix 2: The Admission of Students to the Harris City Academy Crystal Palace Appendix 3: How to calculate the value added of a secondary school by Professor David Jesson of York University Appendices 4 and 5: Analysis of a sample group of English schools on the list of 638, who in 2007 did not achieve 5+ A*-C at GCSE including maths and English using the David Jesson Value Added and improvement approach Appendix 6: Standard curriculum used by the Summer Institute for the Gifted in the United States Appendix 7: PISA rating of OECD countries by performance in maths, science and reading Bibliography
Sir Cyril Taylor has served as an adviser to ten successive UK Education Secretaries and Four Prime Ministers, both Conservative and Labour, from Margaret Thatcher to Gordon Brown, on first the City Technology colleges, then the Specialist Schools, and subsequently on the Specialist Schools and Academies programme from 1987 to 2007.