A diverse offering twixt the interesting, the unusual, and the amusing.
Sunday, 14 December 2014
Education, again. A Sunday Special.
Back in 2011 I wrote a piece Here about classroom disturbance in the UK's secondary schools, and the effect it had on those pupils who wished to learn and advance.
My thoughts were, and still are, that a two-road system is so much better. Academic schools for those who are desirous and capable of taking and passing exams, and more trade/skills based schools for those who wish to find employment on leaving school.
Pre Harold Wilson (a 1960's left-wing English Prime Minister) this was indeed the case. Secondary Modern schools taught the majority of children, and Grammar Schools fast-tracked those who wished to go on to college or university. It was a system which worked well.
Wilson changed all this and dumped all children of differing talents together; high achievers and low achievers all in the same classroom. (On his plus side I must add that Wilson did establish The Open University; at least he got one thing right!)
OK, this may sound all very PC and Socialist, but those who wished to learn were often held back by those who wished to just fool about and cause disruption. It is estimated that brighter children are losing an average of an hour a day's teaching through classroom disturbance.
I'm pleased to see that a recent Ofsted report has now come to the same conclusion as myself. Ofsted (Office for Standards in Education) is the UK's non-ministerial Government Department for all things educational.
So, now that they've woken up at long last, what will they do about it. Probably nothing; a return to pre-Wilson days will take decades, meanwhile thousands of children who showed huge promise at their Primary Schools are now being failed by their Secondary Schools.... and all because of some ridiculous left-wing social experiment.
I am probably not the best person to lecture government big-wigs, but I think it's ALWAYS better to aim for the Highest Common Denominator rather than the Lowest. They've tried 'dumbing down'; it didn't work. Social experiment is all well and good, but playing with children's futures is not.
The difference between an optimist and a pessimist, is that the optimist enjoys himself whilst waiting for the inevitable! I AM that optimist!
This is a daily, optimistic, 'photos and comments' blog. I make no judgements (only occasionally), just notes. If you wish to comment in any way at all, please feel free. Everything and everyone (except the obdurate and dictatorial) is very welcome.
I was born just south of London, but for the past 50 years I've lived in S W France. I am a painter by profession, and writer by desire. Lady Magnon and I live between an ancient cottage in a tiny village in perfectly tranquil French countryside, and a bijou townhouse in Brighton UK. In France we have plenty of fruit trees, all situated amongst a view that takes the breath away, in the UK we have a handkerchief sized patio. We also have a Border Collie called Billy. I try to treat our planet with respect, and encourage others to do likewise (without preaching).
Contentment is a glass of red, a plate of charcuterie, and a slice of good country bread. Perfect!