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EdTech news roundup – September 2017

A look at some of the most important UK education and edtech stories from September 2017

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Here are three of the latest UK education and edtech news stories from last month…

A quarter of young people admit to bullying someone online

32% of boys, compared with 22% of girls admit to cyberbullying, having bullied or insulted someone else online, according to a study published today. Research from the thinktank Demos found:

  • Boys are more likely to have bullied someone online than girls
  • Young people with “stronger traits of empathy and self-control” are less likely to cyberbully.

The survey of 668 16 to 18-year-olds was conducted via Facebook and analysed their online behaviour and responses to various social media scenarios. Focus groups with 40 teenagers in London and Birmingham were also held.

Ensure your school is well informed regarding digital literacy and online safety legislation.

Social media ‘jargon buster’ highlights pupils’ digital rights

A social media “jargon buster” for teachers and pupils is being sent to English schools. The aim is to improve understanding of the terms and conditions of social media apps such as Snapchat, Facebook, YouTube, WhatsApp and Instagram. Created by the children’s commissioner for England and Tes, with the help of specialist privacy law firm Schillings, the guides outline the rights of social media companies. They also give insight to their rules, along with the rights of those who use them.  Children’s commissioner for England Anne Longfield said:

“The social media giants have not done enough to make children aware of what they are signing up to when they install an app or open an account. These are often the first contracts a child signs in their life, yet the terms and conditions are impenetrable, even to most adults.”

If your school has a good handle on social media, read our suggestions for incorporating social media into the modern classroom.

How to improve the school results – not extra maths but music, loads of it

A Bradford primary school wants the world to know its newfound Sats success is down to giving all children up to six hours of music a week.

This article tells the story of Abiha, who was just five when she turned up at Feversham primary academy’s after-school clubs. She left teachers astounded by her musical ability and how her confidence grew with an instrument in hand. Last year, Abiha successfully auditioned for Bradford’s gifted and talented music programme for primary school children, the first Muslim girl to do so. The assessor recorded only one word in her notes: “Wow!”.

Abiha’s teachers say her talent might not have been spotted in many schools, where subjects such as music and art are being squeezed out by pressure to reach Sats targets and climb league tables.

Read about Abiha’s story on The Guardian website.