Education for All: Beyond the Classroom – Insights from Understanding Society – 10 November

Understanding Society will be hosting a topical debate on Thursday 10 November 2016 3.45pm -7pm at the National Union Of Teachers, Hamilton House, Mabledon Place, London, WC1H, to discuss the latest issues facing education and skills.

With widely differing life chances amongst young people and growing pressure to tackle the social mobility crises across major parts of the country, the role of education and skills has never been more critical. But educational outcomes remain stubbornly unequal.

This policy event by Understanding Society, the UK Household Longitudinal Study, will look beyond the classroom at the wider factors affecting attainment and outcomes – recognising that education needs to both drive and respond to societal changes. This event will examine wider factors such as selective education, the changing journey from education to work, growing migration and the effects of technology on learning.

Leading experts and practitioners will debate new evidence from Understanding Society and consider how the establishment of a single Department for Education, providing an end to end view of education and skills, presents opportunities for fresh thinking.

The event will be supporting the ESRC’s Festival of Social Science.

The event is aimed at schools, colleges, policy makers, local authorities, employer and skills bodies, youth and family charities, student organisations, universities and think tanks. With the new Government keen to purse major social reforms, this event will promote a cross-sectoral conversation – between policy makers, practitioners and researchers and across the education and skills sector.


3.45pm to 4.15pm: Registration and coffee

4.15pm to 4.25pm: Welcome and introduction

  • Chair: Fran Abrams, Chief Executive, Education Media Centre
  • David Walker, Chair, Understanding Society Governing Board
  • Professor Michaela Benzeval, Director, Understanding Society
    4.25pm to 4.50pm: Headline findings from Understanding Society
  • Dr Birgitta Rabe, Senior Research Fellow and Education Topic Champion, Understanding Society
  • Do selective schooling systems increase inequality? Professor Simon Burgess, Director, Centre for Market and Public Organisation, University of Bristol

4.50pm to 6.00pm: Policy implications: What direction for education reforms – and where are the gaps?
Panel discussion:

  • Professor Simon Burgess
  • Leora Cruddas, Director of Policy and Public Relations, Association of School and College Leaders (ASCL)
  • Professor David Gillborn, Director of Centre for Research in Race & Education (CRRE) and Director of Research, School of Education, University of Birmingham
  • Lord James O’Shaughnessy, Chair, Centre for Character and Values, Legatum Institute; Founder, Floreat Education and previous Director of Policy to David Cameron (2010-11)

6.00pm to 7.00pm: Networking and drinks reception

Launch of Insights 2016

The event will also see the launch of the Insights 2016 report. This annual publication highlights policy relevant findings emerging from research that uses Understanding Society’s rich data and offers commentary from policy thinkers. This year the publication will profile research by a wide range of social scientists covering education, health and employment and families. It will also explore how Understanding Society’s large UK wide sample is better supporting policy research and evaluation in the context of devolution.

Register for Education for All here


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