Friday, 4 July 2008

‘Teaching..? Who Has Time For That Anymore!

If the DEA proposals to have ‘preparing good little future worker drones’ into the curriculum weren’t daft enough, you can rely on Ed Balls to come up with an even more outlandish suggestion:
Schools are to be judged on how they improve children's 'wellbeing' by tackling obesity, drug abuse and teenage pregnancy.

Teachers will be expected to monitor and record up to 31 detailed aspects of their pupils' lives at home and at school.
Yes, because they’ve solved the ‘reading and writing’ problems and have 100% literacy for school leavers, right? What else are they to do with their time…?
The controversial plans come as Children's Secretary Ed Balls launches a clampdown on hundreds of 'coasting' schools that are not doing enough to raise standards.

He is introducing new legal powers that will force complacent local authorities to take action, even against schools that have good exam results but are not displaying sufficient progress year-on-year.
‘Progress’ in what, precisely…? Ah:
In addition, the Government is planning to introduce 'strong school level indicators' that will measure how much the country's primaries and secondaries are contributing to pupils' well-being.

Schools and local authorities could be made to gather data about 'on site health services' such as contraception clinics which hand out condoms and morning after pills.

Schools will also be expected to monitor healthy eating, look out for 'signs of abuse or neglect' (Ed – this is new..?) and record whether pupils walk or cycle to school.

The report says that this 'robust information' will be used by Ofsted in inspections from 2009 onwards. It will also allow comparisons between schools.
Whoever came up with this is living in utter fantasy land. Or should be sectioned…

For once, I’m in full agreement with a union official:
Mick Brookes, general secretary of the National Association of Head Teachers, said: 'We see an increasing apparent responsibility for the ills of all society being planted on to schools.

'The danger of that, of course, is that they will be distracted from their core task which is good quality education.

'For some schools, the well-being agenda is one that isn't particularly applicable.

'The children appear to be thriving in their lives and we could have a reverse situation where these schools will be at the bottom of any such statistical analysis.'
He’s not alone, either:
Professor Alan Smithers, director of the Centre for Education and Employment Research at Buckingham University, said: 'The Government seems obsessed with gathering statistics about every aspect of children's lives.

'It's worse than a nanny state. It's reducing children and schools to a series of numbers.'
This government is on the way out. There’s now no question. This bonkers proposal is just another nail in the coffin, and an inside job to boot.

But will Cameron’s team be any better..? I’d hope to see robust condemnation of this proposal, and a vow to scrap it the minute the Conservatives get in. But I wonder….


Anonymous said...

Yes and all this governmental interference in schools means there will be less time to teach children how to pray to Allah:

Anonymous said...

Oh, my lord....!

And the 'Mail' has a much longer quote from Deputy headmaster Keith Plant that sums up the stuttering, deer-in-the-headlights reaction of a complete fool caught with his pants down to a tee:

Deputy headmaster Keith Plant said: "It's difficult to know at the moment whether this was part of the curriculum or not. I am not an RE teacher, I am an English teacher.

"At the moment it is our enterprise week and many of our members of staff are away.

"The particular member of staff you need to speak to isn't around. I think that it is a shame that so many parents have got in touch with the Press before coming to me.

"I have spoken to the teacher and she has articulately given me her version of events, but that is all I can give you at the moment."