Education Business 28.01

Will 2023 be a smooth ride?

2022 was another turbulent year. With three prime ministers and five education secretaries, the unsettled political situation caused further upheaval for a sector that was still feeling the effects of the pandemic.

So what does 2023 have in store for the sector? The Department for Education, at least, seems settled, with Gillian Keegan in place as education secretary and the return of some familiar DfE faces – Robert Halfon and Nick Gibb. But of course, challenges remain, namely funding, the cost of living crisis, teacher recruitment, catch-up education, and so on. And there have not been many announcements from the DfE to truly understand the direction of travel for the sector.

In his first speech of 2023, the prime minister Rishi Sunak set out his new ambition of ensuring that all school pupils in England study some form of maths to the age of 18. This is to counter poor numeracy levels; figures show that around 8 million adults in England have the numeracy skills of primary school children. The prime minister has, however, acknowledged that it will take time, so realistically, it won’t be in place until 2025.

In this issue of Education Business, Niel McLean, head of education at BCS, The Chartered Institute for IT, looks at how schools can ensure that their IT provision is inclusive, effective and tackles digital inequality. Meanwhile Gareth Jelley from edtech charity LGfL-The National Grid for Learning, shares his top tips on how to prevent a ransomware attack. We also look ahead to Bett 2023, which will once again gather the global education community to explore and learn about the latest education technology.

Angela Pisanu, editor