News Dr Andrew Davis claims rival camps in the debate over how to teach children to read are acting like 'religious fundamentalists'

Children who are fluent readers are being damaged by the Government’s insistence on using synthetic phonics in the classroom, a leading academic warns today.

Tim Smit is setting up the world’s first digital technical college to give blue-collar workers the same ‘dignity’ as the white-collar professions

Tim Smit: Life after Eden... Mr Optimism returns with a new big idea

Tim Smit, the maverick behind Cornwall's indoor rainforests, now has an even grander project: shaking up Britain's blue-collar workforce. Michael McCarthy meets him

Tesco's Sir Terry voices support for higher tuition fees at universities

Sir Terry Leahy, the former Tesco boss, yesterday claimed that higher tuition fees would boost academic standards because students treated university like a "three-year gap year" when degrees were cheap.

Laurie Penny: Shame has become our stick for beating the poor

Single mother Shanene Thorpe was squeezed by the BBC into a caricature: shameless scrounger

Lianne Gutcher: If the Taliban regains power, girls may lose an education

Many families will not allow daughters to attend school if the teacher is male

Roy Hodgson keeps an eye on training in Oslo

England squad to visit Auschwitz during Euro 2012

Members of England's Euro 2012 squad will visit the former Nazi death camp at Auschwitz when they travel to Poland ahead of next month's European Championship.

Simpson died last year, aged 92
Referee Andre Marriner steps in as Suarez and Evra clash

PFA want racist abuse punishments increased

The Professional Footballers Association want to make racist abuse on the field a sackable offence next season.

Michael Gove rejects demands for more grammar schools

Education Secretary Michael Gove today rejected demands by Conservative MPs to allow the creation of more grammar schools, insisting they were not a “magic bullet” to solve the problems of the education system.

Deaf children at risk of losing vital services as local councils implement second year of savage cuts

Deaf children are at risk of losing vital services as local councils implement a second year of savage cuts, a new report by a deaf children’s charity has warned.

NHS education reforms 'lack detail'

The Government's plans to reform education and training in the NHS are unclear and lack detail, MPs have warned.

Parents join striking teachers at academy row school

Parents joined striking teachers on the picket line outside a primary school yesterday, in a protest against Michael Gove's "ideological" attempts to impose academy status.

Leading article: Lessons still to be learnt from grammar schools

Last week, it was the Education Secretary, Michael Gove.

Pupils at independent schools outscore state pupils in passing good A-levels

Clegg condemns divide in schools as 'corrosive'

Lib Dem leader mounts withering attack on 'damaging' effects of inequality

Kara Hayward

Observations: The latest child star with brains to back up their movie career

Kara Hayward is the latest in a line of child actresses who have brains as well as talent. The 13-year-old star of Cannes opening-night film Moonrise Kingdom has been a member of Mensa since the age of nine. Some of the Massachusetts native's artwork and poems have been published. So she looks odds-on to join the club of brainy actresses who, having taken Hollywood by storm, decide to take a career sabbatical to study. 

Chalk Talk: Where in the world can you find a decent education?

First it was Michael Gove wanting to embrace the Swedish schools' reforms to try and inject new life into efforts to raise standards in schools.

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Independent Travel
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence – Five-star MS Swiss Corona 7 nights from £999pp
Lake Como St Moritz & the Bernina Express 7 nights from £809pp
Vietnam
Lake Maggiore, Orta & the Matterhorn 7 nights from £939pp
South Africa
Spain
Prices correct as of 19 December 2014
Isis in Iraq: Yazidi girls killing themselves to escape rape and imprisonment by militants

'Jilan killed herself in the bathroom. She cut her wrists and hanged herself'

Yazidi girls killing themselves to escape rape and imprisonment
Ed Balls interview: 'If I think about the deficit when I'm playing the piano, it all goes wrong'

Ed Balls interview

'If I think about the deficit when I'm playing the piano, it all goes wrong'
He's behind you, dude!

US stars in UK panto

From David Hasselhoff to Jerry Hall
Grace Dent's Christmas Quiz: What are you – a festive curmudgeon or top of the tree?

Grace Dent's Christmas Quiz

What are you – a festive curmudgeon or top of the tree?
Nasa planning to build cloud cities in airships above Venus

Nasa planning to build cloud cities in airships above Venus

Planet’s surface is inhospitable to humans but 30 miles above it is almost perfect
Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history - clocks, rifles, frogmen’s uniforms and colonial helmets

Clocks, rifles, swords, frogmen’s uniforms

Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history
Return to Gaza: Four months on, the wounds left by Israel's bombardment have not yet healed

Four months after the bombardment, Gaza’s wounds are yet to heal

Kim Sengupta is reunited with a man whose plight mirrors the suffering of the Palestinian people
Gastric surgery: Is it really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

Is gastric surgery really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

Critics argue that it’s crazy to operate on healthy people just to stop them eating
Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction Part 2 - now LIVE

Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction

Bid on original art, or trips of a lifetime to Africa or the 'Corrie' set, and help Homeless Veterans
Pantomime rings the changes to welcome autistic theatre-goers

Autism-friendly theatre

Pantomime leads the pack in quest to welcome all
The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

Sony suffered a chorus of disapproval after it withdrew 'The Interview', but it's not too late for it to take a stand, says Joan Smith
From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?

Panto dames: before and after

From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?
Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Booksellers say readers are turning away from dark modern thrillers and back to the golden age of crime writing
Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best,' says founder of JustGiving

Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best'

Ten million of us have used the JustGiving website to donate to good causes. Its co-founder says that being dynamic is as important as being kind
The botanist who hunts for giant trees at Kew Gardens

The man who hunts giants

A Kew Gardens botanist has found 25 new large tree species - and he's sure there are more out there