An education Bill to be unveiled in the Queen's Speech on Wednesday will create a set of pupil and parent “guarantees” for the first time – outlining what families can expect from the state school system in England.I think families (the ones that care, that is) already know what they can expect from the state school system in England.
And I can’t see this Bill changing their minds…
This includes one-to-one tuition for pupils struggling in the basics, five hours of PE every week, the right to “high quality” cultural activities and a promise that all schools will promote healthy eating, active lifestyles and mental wellbeing.And who is going to pay for this? Where are you going to find the time in the already hectic and stuffed-with-pointless-gimmicks curriculum?
In a hugely contentious move, parents will be able to complain directly the Local Government Ombudsman if schools and councils fail to meet the guarantees.Oh, that’ll go down like a lead balloon with the teaching unions. Boy, Labour must be really, really confidant of their votes, eh?
It prompted claims from head teachers’ leaders that the proposals would turn into a “whingers’ charter” and open the door to litigation.Well, of course it will. You can’t even claim it is an unforeseen conclusion, considering how the disability legislation has led to situations like that of the ‘school phobic’ boy, can you?
A spokesman for the Department for Children, Schools and Families said: “…This simply will not lead to a flood of court cases against schools…"It will not. Because they say so.
Well, I know I’m convinced by that. Anyone else?
The whole speach was a waste of time (and money).
Think of the boost to the economy and the extra jobs created if this goes through. The 'no win no fee' brigade must be sharpening their pencils and rubbing their hands in glee - they will have to take on extra staff to cover the work load. Only problem - this government doesn't have the money to cover it.
If schools were like any other service then we would have a contract, with the supplier (ie the school) to provide a stated level of service and the steps to be taken upon a shortfall.
So, there's nothing implicitly wrong with any of these proposals although they aren't what I'd agree in a contract. After all, McDonalds claim to provide high quality food and so for the school to claim to offer high quality activities is a pretty vague deliverable. So too the others.
What is wrong is the state both deciding what schools should provide and whether individual schools fail to meet their promises. No conflict of interest there.
In particular, there is no recognition that individuals vary. I want a contract that avoids my primary school asking the kids to find out why Chris Moyles has been climbing Mount Kilimanjaro. Even the parents who thought AGW was true objected to the celebrity Heat/OK/Hello culture being brought into school.
"Five hours of PE every week, the right to “high quality” cultural activities"?
How about the right to education?
Maybe we could start by giving parents the right to sue the head teacher of any school that gets a "4" rating from Ofsted?
"The whole speach was a waste of time (and money)."
Indeed. Even republicans must have felt sympathy for the Queen, being forced to spout that drivel.
"The 'no win no fee' brigade must be sharpening their pencils and rubbing their hands in glee..."
Quite! A good day to be a lawyer...
"In particular, there is no recognition that individuals vary."
Even worse - there's a recognition that individualism is something to be ashamed of, and stamped out.
"Maybe we could start by giving parents the right to sue the head teacher of any school that gets a "4" rating from Ofsted?"
Now, that might stir things up!
Anyone for a class action?
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