NSW – Preparing for the Future

Written by Steve Richards on 02/02/2018.

Back in the late 1990s, when New Labour had just come into office and Steve Richards, our Educational Director, was working with CARE for Education as a Project Manager, it was very difficult to envisage that the small project which began as a workshop idea at a missions conference in Texas, would, twenty years later, […]

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Remarkable exam results yet again!

Written by Steve Richards on 01/02/2016.

NorthStarWorldwide has just published its exam results for 2015 and they are quite superb! To assist families and schools we publish our results for previous years in a combined document covering the period 2012-15. In our opinion, this allows people to see how we are doing over more than one year. We are delighted to […]

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Online schools ‘worse than traditional teachers’? Really … all of them?

Written by Steve Richards on 05/11/2015.

Online schools ‘worse than traditional teachers’ – so ran a headline on the BBC web site on the 4th November. The article, written by the BBC’s education correspondent Sean Coughlan, was reporting and commenting upon the National Study of Online Charter Schools’ published by CREDO and educational research centre based at Stanford University in California […]

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Not at home

Written by Steve Richards on 22/10/2015.

A little while ago I spent a week in Menorca with my wife, Lyn. It is a beautiful island, in fact one of the few places that I am happy to return to time and time again. We were on holiday, and as such, despite our best efforts we looked very ‘British’ and most definitely […]

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Trojan horse & faith-based education

Written by Steve Richards on 09/06/2014.

Clearly there is plenty that is wrong with at least some of these ‘Trojan horse’ schools in Birmingham (although I must say that it does not help when the problems are named after a Greek myth!). However, given that the chair of governors at one of the leading ‘Trojan Horse’ schools is himself an Ofsted […]

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George Orwell and the importance of words

Written by Steve Richards on 05/06/2013.

George Orwell, the great British writer of the first half of the twentieth century, is one of my favourite authors. Although best remembered these days for books like ‘1984’ and ‘Animal Farm’, he was also a prolific essay-writer. In one of his essays, ‘Politics and the English Language’, written in 1946, Orwell argued (amongst other […]

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Why NSW is cutting back on its exam centre subjects

Written by Steve Richards on 23/05/2013.

Over the last month or so, we have had a lengthy discussion about the future of the NSW exam centre. This was prompted by a number of factors but primarily by Cambridge’s extending of the exam timetable in recent years so that it now runs for over six weeks in the June session and over […]

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‘One size fits all’ – the new mantra!

Written by Steve Richards on 20/05/2013.

Two events took place over the weekend that confirmed what I had feared for a long time with regard to the current educational world in England – one was Michael Gove being interviewed at the annual meeting of head teachers and the other was a conversation I had with a former colleague who continues to […]

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Lunacy passing off as academic research!

Written by Steve Richards on 13/05/2013.

If you follow NSW on Facebook, you will probably be aware of a comment that I made last week in response to a mind-numbingly daft idea that was proposed by an educationalist last week that children with summer birthdays should have their GCSE marks ‘adjusted’ to take account of the fact that they are almost […]

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Some wisdom from an American educator

Written by Steve Richards on 06/05/2013.

Last week, I came across a wonderful talk given by an American educator called Rita Pierson where she argues that every child needs a champion. Rita mentions a conversation that she had with a colleague who said to her “They don’t pay me to like the kids.” Her response was brief and packed with wisdom – “Kid’s […]

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