Skip to main content

Education England 2015 - a warning

Here lies Freedom in Education
It's May 2015 and the General Election is upon us in the UK. The last 5 years in Education can only be described as the most destructive ever undertaken. The seismic changes that Sir Michael Gove and Lord Michael Wilshaw (ex Ofsted chief) have imposed upon schools in England from the end of 2011 are only starting to be horribly realised. 
Thousands of teachers have left the profession due to measures that have brought untold misery to millions of learners now subjected to 'teaching to the test' to keep England in the top 5 of the PISA table, and Performance Related Pay, which has failed in its promise to attract the best to the profession, has been the subject of intense scrutiny after it was alleged results were been manipulated to ensure some schools could continue offering the best salaries. Prime Minister Cameron, who survived one attempted leadership battle after his disastrous handling of the Iran crisis in 2012, now faces another as his Tory faithful realise the misjudgement of allowing two ideologues complete control over education in this country.
England may be in the top 5 performers according to PISA, which is itself facing questions over bribery allegations, but this does nothing to alleviate the crisis facing tens of thousands of recent graduates and school leavers who have no prospect of employment due to 'GoveShaw' measures during 2012 to decrease vocational qualifications to less than 20, forcing schools and universities to offer only academic subjects which present employers are no longer interested in.

It doesn't have to be like this. You are a teacher and you know your class.
You know what they require to move them on in their learning, not some government rhetoric.
You know every learner in your class, not some visiting Ofsted inspector who sees them as data.

You are the teacher.

Teach. Lead. Facilitate. Guide. Question. Reason. Listen. Learn.

Be the teacher you know you really are.


Popular posts from this blog

How to use proxy setting with Linux Mint

The dreaded proxy server has reared its head again. If you read my post about Linux OS for old tech you would have found me advocating Ubuntu, Elementary and Linux Mint. Unfortunately, I have found Linux Mint to be problematic if your school server uses proxy settings to get online. Ubuntu and Elementary also require changes to the network settings if you use a proxy, but this only involves a simple change in the Network Settings panel. This doesn't work in Linux Mint, the settings can be entered but will not remain saved.

So, here's the 'how to' courtesy of the askUbuntu Q&A section - if you're not keen on using terminal commands I suggest you either don't bother using Linux Mint and stick to Ubuntu or Elementary (or any other Linux distro) or swallow your fears and give this a go.

Use terminal to open /etc/environment using a text edit app as superuser - e.g. interminal type sudo gedit /etc/environment     (enter password when asked)Add the following line…

My latest lesson observation feedback

This was the outcome of my latest lesson observation - I received Good with Outstanding features (whatever that actually means). The form is based on the 2013 Ofsted criteria for a whole school observation, such criteria is not meant to be used to grade individual lessons so why are schools doing exactly that?
To achieve an Outstanding grade on this form I would have needed to do the following in the length of time the lesson observation took place.  Almost all pupils make rapid and sustained progress across the curriculumMarking and feedback from the teacher and pupils is frequent and of consistently high qualityTeaching of reading, writing, communication and maths is exceptionalUse of well judged and often imaginative teaching strategies that match individual needsTime taken to develop skills in other subjectsAppropriate and regular homeworkNow to pick some of these apart. No teacher can possibly be expected to ensure all pupils make sustained and rapid progress across THECURRICULUM

Marking in primary schools is verging on the ridiculous

Marking in primary schools used to be done with a red pen or whatever colour happened to be closest at hand. I've even marked in pencil once, but most of that marking was rubbed out by the children. What's happened now however has been steadily creeping in over the last few years - red pen is seen as bad, a terrible colour to mark with. Children view it as negative even if their work is correct. Red is now a banned marking colour in many primary schools across the land and has been replaced with a plethora of colour coded marking schemes, all followed to the colour due to the ridiculous nature of some primary school marking policies.