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Diary

In this blog we are posting news from around the network, reflections on general news items and other broad-ranging items of interest. Current contributors are Sightlines Initiative directors Robin Duckett, Liz Elders, Debi Keyte Hartland and Chris Merrick.
We have a Library View (see left column) to help you find past articles.

Seeking an assistant atelierista - the American School in London

One of the International Schools of our network is looking for an atelierista assistant:

"The American School in London is looking for an assistant atelierista for the Early Childhood section to provide support for our Reggio inspired creative arts program. In the atelier and the classrooms the 2 pre-K classes (Reception) and 3 Kindergarten classes (Year1) are given opportunities to explore the 100 languages through visual art, music, movement and drama. We follow an emergent curriculum based upon a thorough knowledge of the children's individual and group interests and also through listening to and facilitating dialogue, providing provocations, documenting, interpreting and reflecting on their playful inquiry.

A full job description can be found here "

ASL are making a real focus on their professional development at the moment, with all of the team having been to Reggio, and the core early years team participated in our 2018 Skylight programme. It could be a very exciting school to join, at this point!

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ASL Safeguarding :  "The American School in London is committed to safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children and young people and expects all employees and volunteers to share this commitment. All new appointments will be subject to appropriate checks. Further details upon application."  

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South London Nursery is looking out for staff

 One of our network member settings is seeking staff: could this be for you?

Little Jungle nursery is Reggio inspired OUTSTANDING nursery, based in East Dulwich, South London.

We are looking for experienced passionate and dedicated early years educators to join our team, to work across all ages, from 10 months to 5 years.

We follow an enquiry-based approach, listening to and encouraging children to explore the world and test out their own theories through play and artistic media. We use the children's research as a basis for projects to help them develop skills and knowledge across all areas of learning to enable them to become the strong, confident and free-thinking adults of the future.

This is a fantastic opportunity for anyone looking to grow their knowledge and experience within early years education, as we provide ongoing training, as well as a supportive, fun and friendly environment.

To know more about us, please visit: www.littlejungle.co.uk or contact us on: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


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Making space for learning, Saying NO to squashing children

Right now, 420 educators including 50+ from the UK, are encountering the optimistic and determined work of the city of Reggio Emilia to build an education which is founded on celebrating children's learning potential. The determination and enthusiasm of everyone here fuels optimism and example that things can be different for children and for schools - in the UK and worldwide -even when we experience the 'brick wall' of governments which seem determined to build warehouses of instruction in place of the creative learning which children deserve.


In the UK , whilst working imaginatively and persistently to bring life to education, we also have to confront those who are keen on turning it into an unhappy place of testing and passive instruction. 
Government has announced a new testing plan for young children, which it would like to extend. 
Go here to join the petition against it.

Below are extracts from ​recent articles highlighting the situation, and suggestions of other actions you can take to convince MPs and government to reconsider their wisdom, and instead, support intelligent and humane education. (And you can read more in our last week's diary item.)

'Compulsory national curriculum tests taken by primary school pupils are too closely linked to school performance, the House of Commons Education Committee has said, and are having a negative impact on children's education and wellbeing.

In a new report on primary assessment, the committee found pupils are being taught a narrower curriculum, with staff neglecting arts and humanities subjects by focusing too heavily on maths and English to ensure pupils pass the controversial exams.​'

Read More (The Independent)

'Thousands of parents consider withdrawing primary school children from Sats exams over mental health concerns.​'
Read More (The Independent)

'More than 700 academics, early years experts and teachers sign open letter opposing new national test for four-year-olds

Hundreds of academics are among those who are signing an open letter urging the government to scrap plans to create a baseline assessment test of four- and five-year-olds, which they say will be both pointless and damaging to pupils.'

Read More (Times Education Supplement)

'Increasingly parents are asking what they can do to protect children from the high stakes testing in primary schools. There's a mainstream awareness that the system is not fit for purpose and that the pressure children face in primary school is damaging.
It's hard for parents to know what to do for the best. Parents are very respectful of teachers and headteachers and trust them with the well-being of their children. However, parents are also aware that the teaching profession is speaking out against SATs and being ignored.

  • This Question Time clip shows the strength of public opinion against the high stakes testing and the frustration felt by the profession.
  • This article shows that MPs are aware of the link between SATs and mental health.
  • This report shows the severe impact high pressured testing can have on young children.'

LetKidsBeKids are promoting a parent-led 'withdrawal from SATs' campaign -

Read More here. (Let Kids Be Kids)

Children do not live in the future - they live today. We can change their present. 
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