I’ve been wondering for ages how to blog something by Diane Ravitch, research professor in New York University’s Steinhardt School of Culture, Education and Human Development. Well, there is something I’ve always quite liked, something she wrote on evidence-based research just over ten years ago. Surrounded by a medical team in an intensive care unit,… Continue reading ‘What if Research Really Mattered?’
In the middle of October, Terry Leahy, boss of TESCo, declared standards in education to be ‘woefully low’. Now, as reported in today’s Telegraph, Sir Stuart Rose, the M&S chief, has added his name to the long list of critics of the suitability of the system to provide business with workers who have the right… Continue reading Can’t read, can’t write – not fit for work!
The government’s latest edict is beginning to make it sound like a Private Eye parody of itself. Its latest decree is to ‘guarantee’ children a legal right to a good education. According to last week’s Telegraph, John Dunford, of the Association of School and College Leaders, ‘warned that the proposed laws risked creating one of… Continue reading Government guarantees – the new “cones hot-line”!
Yesterday morning I received this letter from a head teacher of a school where all the teaching staff, including the head, have been trained in Sounds-Write: Dear John,Please find enclosed a copy of a piece of unaided writing recently carried out by a child at our school. It is a testament to the power of… Continue reading Creative writing at five years of age!
What we can’t seem expect from today’s politicians is for them to take anything remotely like a radical or even a necessary decision. Why? Because they are such a pusillanimous lot: they are terrified that if they do anything other than tweak or tinker with the education system as it stands, they’ll lose the votes… Continue reading Our craven politicians
After training teachers and marking large quantities of undergraduate essays, I resurface! And it is with glee that I read Roland White’s speculation in this week’s Sunday Times that Ed Balls may be the next victim of the Portillo moment. According to White, Mike Smithson of Political Betting.com has ‘punted quite heavily at good odds… Continue reading Hasta la vista, Baby!
The issue of school places has stirred up a passionate row in the press this week. There’s a piece in the Telegraph by an infuriated Judith Woods, titled ‘Ed Balls’s insane education policies make school gate cheats of us all: The lack of decent schools has driven parents to desperate lengths’. In it, she lays… Continue reading Of school standards, swindlers and Soviet style education policies.
Once again the Labour government has displayed its true bureaucratic colours and decided to refuse to recognise IGCSEs, exams which many schools, independent and state, have insisted are more rigorous than GCSEs and more suited to the needs and abilities of their pupils.In today’s Independent, Dr Kevin Stannard, director of education at Cambridge International examinations,… Continue reading The dictatorship of the Ball-etariat