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Positive news and views of teaching

Discussion in 'Education news' started by Shedman, Mar 27, 2017.

  1. PeterQuint

    PeterQuint Lead commenter

    Anyone who thinks things are just going to keep getting worse forever aren't basing their beliefs on any reference to historical fact, nor to common sense.

    The Conservative government's number one priority is to win the next election. Conservative MPs' number one priority is to keep their seat at the next election.

    Kicking teachers, aiming for small government, cutting public spending, may all be high up on their list of priorities, but are (at best) secondary to keeping their jobs.

    The swing voters who decide elections are largely parents or grandparents who send their kids to state schools.

    Always remember that.
  2. peakster

    peakster Star commenter

    That would be true if there was an alternative to vote for - currently there isn't

    The Tories can win elections for the next 20 years if they want to - if Scotland goes then we may never get a labour government again.

    The situation in Education will not improve for a long time to come.
    drek, peggylu, eljefeb90 and 3 others like this.
  3. peakster

    peakster Star commenter

    If anyone can wake Corbyn they might like to show him the front page of the i newspaper this morning.
  4. PeterQuint

    PeterQuint Lead commenter

    I certainly agree on Corbyn and the lack of an effective opposition.

    However, until and unless May calls an early election, the small size of their majority is a major factor. There are rumblings (and no one saw this coming) of a LibDem comeback in Europhile tory seats. Those traditional LibDem seats that they lost at the last election still have extremely strong local party organisation, and the tory MPs who won them over are quite fearful for their seats.

    Like all parties, the Conservatives are best seen as a loose federation of warring tribes. Whilst the cardboard cutout caricature we see painted here of Conservatives, there are many who are nothing like as right wing, and many oppose grammars and are not happy with cuts to school funding.

    If, on the other hand, May does call a snap election we're likely to see a lot stronger Labour opposition replacing Corbyn. An effective opposition, even with a large majority against them, is more likely to appeal to swing voters when the effects of the government's education policy really start to bite, should they continue unabated.

    Regarding pay, we've already see the TPRB say that there'll need to be a substantial increase in pay before 2020 if the recruitment problem is to be tackled. The TPRB do not normally say things quite as divergent from government policy if they don't think it's possible.

    Regarding workload we've already seen noises from Spielman, Harford and Gibb about this needs to be tackled.

    I expect movement.
  5. schoolsout4summer

    schoolsout4summer Star commenter

    I can only guess that Labour don't actually want to be in power at the moment. Why? I have no idea.
    wanet and PeterQuint like this.
  6. cb324

    cb324 Occasional commenter

    Think its the mixture of anti-corbyn mp's and a big campaign against Corbyn by the mainstream media (similar to Ed Mibilband with a bacon sandwich). Either way, does anyone really see Labour winning an election now? If or when Scotland leaves the UK, it's surely the end for Labour? Too many counties in the UK who won't vote them in power.
  7. PeterQuint

    PeterQuint Lead commenter

    A lot to discuss there.

    Firstly, the bacon sarnie. Hardly anti-Labour in itself, as Cameron had something similar eating a hot dog with a knife and fork. Corbyn does have a rabid tory media against him, but the Miliband's sarnie isn't the evidence.

    Secondly, Scotish independence. I'm not sure Scotland will go. The opinion polls (fairly accurate last time - if anything underestimating 'No's lead) suggest there's been little change. If it doesn't, every SNP MP will be happy in coalition with Labour. And the idea they might use the coalition to get independence evaporates if they've lost indyref2. The first was a 'once in a generation' event. A second would be understandable post-brexit. But then that'd be it for years, barring something else as big as brexit, or a massive and clear sing in the opinion polls that independence was wanted.

    Thirdly, if Scotland did go it's not the end for Labour, and certainly not the start of permanent tory rule. The stats don't bear that out:

  8. PeterQuint

    PeterQuint Lead commenter

    Sorry, one thing to sad.

    As soon as Scotland became independent, and it was clear Labour majorities would become more rare, we'd see a system of proportional representation set up as soon as there was any non-Conservative coalition.

    Indeed, I'm not sure the Conservatives wouldn't go for it themselves, knowing how unsustainable a lopsided FPTP system would be in that situation.
  9. applecrumblebumble

    applecrumblebumble Lead commenter

    The situation education and other government departments are in, is brexit. The government do not know how much money we might have to give to the Eu. They are trying to build up a big war chest and part of that process involves savings on costs. While we are in this climate, no more funds to schools and other departments. Now if things get resolved before the next election and the Eu do not ask for too much, there maybe some money to spread around.
    As far as labour is concerned, if I were them I would not be trying too hard to get into,the driving seat of brexit.
    schoolsout4summer likes this.
  10. Mrsmumbles

    Mrsmumbles Star commenter

    Balderdash, I am afraid. The Toryroffs don't care as their lot all attend Eton, Harrow or posh rowing schools with colossal fees and numerous contacts for their darling Ines to schmooze with. They have sold out the diligent public sector teachers and NHS staff years ago. They want it culled as they cannot afford the increased pension contributions. It will be a luxury to have an all round education soon. Online academies such as Khan academy, and tutors will plug the ever increasing gaps. Many kids are so turned off schooling, they'd probably prefer to be given a free iPad and a bagful of pretty apps and told where to go. Social skills are quickly heading down the toilet, as is the idea of a teacher being a fully educated professional. It's one size fits all and jack of all trade teachers now, not specialists. Unless you're Gove, of course, he knows and is good at everything.
    schoolsout4summer and peggylu like this.
  11. Mrsmumbles

    Mrsmumbles Star commenter

    I'm worried about a huge rise in local tutors in my area. I'm currently doing well and pick my hours. Then I made rhe mistake of logging onto that map that change.org have made. You type in your postcode and it flashes up all the local schools with the percentage of cuts they face. A top local secondary faces fourteen percent, all the primaries face seven to ten. Which means staff jobs, more tutors, lower hourly rate can be charged as Jenny does it for fifteen an hour, not forty. Ho hum. I'm paying off as many debts as I can, as fast as I can, as I just have no idea what my earning power will be this year. On the plus, I'm a great boss to me and will never face capability bullying blolloxs again.
    Shedman and schoolsout4summer like this.
  12. Mrsmumbles

    Mrsmumbles Star commenter

    Personally I don't think grammars are all bad...what IS disgraceful is May et al touting them as this great educational cure-all and offering cash for them whilst our existing schools are collapsing and need money desperately. We need different schools and, ideally, no academies. Because they mostly suck. Grammars did offer social mobility to some, but devastated those who didn't pass. Sadly, in so many schools nowadays, most kids are turned right off learning. It's wrong that the brightest are held back. It's also wrong to siphon off all the cash. What is especially wrong and unforgivable is the fact that academies were meant to fix the divide a d level off the playing field, but have actually made it far worse. What do you reckon, Nicky ***** of Surbiton Posh High fame? Or Gormless Gove, former Robert Gordon's boy? Shall we abolish all selective schools?
  13. PeterQuint

    PeterQuint Lead commenter

    This is fine talk if you're at an SWP meeting, but it bears very little relation to reality.

    Even after the '83 and '87 elections where we had a very right wing tory government with a massive majority they found themselves constrained by public opinion and moderates in parliament/the cabinet.

    UltimatelyThatcher'sr own party ousted her because of the Poll Tax, despite her having a majority of over a hundred.

    Even that wasn't enough to stop a massive reduction in the tory's majority in '92, with Major having to govern with one hand tied behind his back due to cabinet's famous '********'.

    The scars are still there, and every MP, every cabinet minister and any PM knows that, no matter how much power they have now, it can disappear very quickly if you ignore public opinion, particularly 'Mondeo Man' and his sucsessors.

    If you've read any political history from the '80s and '90s. you'd know that to be true.

    Your 'Torytoffs' comments again ignores the fact that elections in the UK are decided by a few swing voters in a few swing seats, and that very few of these voters send their kids to public school.

    And from September onwards we're about to see the consequences of this:

  14. applecrumblebumble

    applecrumblebumble Lead commenter

    It has been nice to see that the facts of life have caught up with academies. Yes it does all come down to money. They have cut education to the bone and they are still failing. They pay their MAT ceos massive salaries with little contribution to the actual education of the pupils. Over 50% of schools say they will be increasing class sizes next year, you try and fit 35 or more Y11 in the smaller modern classroom and see what happens to behaviour. There is no hiding place you make teaching staff redundant, bigger classes, a more limited curriculum or you reduce the size of your SLT team and get rid of ceos. That would be the bare bones of education.
    Mrsmumbles likes this.
  15. PeterQuint

    PeterQuint Lead commenter

    I agree, but not all academies are in MATs. We bang on about academies, but I think it's MATs who are the real problem.

    Two idential academies, one in a MAT the other not, the big difference is the aademy in the MAT pays literally hundreds of thousands on pounds every year into the MAT which does them absolutely no good whatsoever. How many news stories have we seen about MATs having academies taken off them because they've not improved?

    Even when a MAT does some good it's a hugely expensve way of going about doing something relatively simple, and which should be quite cheap.
  16. peakster

    peakster Star commenter

    MATs are far more proficient in money laundering than they are in Education
    Mrsmumbles and lulu57 like this.
  17. Shedman

    Shedman Star commenter

    Spot on!
    Mrsmumbles likes this.
  18. BigFrankEM

    BigFrankEM Occasional commenter

    I'm torn by this contribution:

    On the one hand, it is for me at least, a reasonably accurate summary of elements of British political reality.

    On the other hand however, it completely fails, for me at least, to acknowledge the underlying truth to the effect that, in the round, the British (viz primarily English) electorate has been willing if not quite "since time immemorial" then certainly for the past 35+ years to vote for parties whose educational policies have not even risen to the scant heights of "being formulated on the back of a fag packet."

    Positive news? "You're joking me. Please tell me that you're joking me!"
    Mrsmumbles likes this.
  19. PeterQuint

    PeterQuint Lead commenter

    There's much truth there.

    There is a difference between what's happening now and what's happened in the past, though.

    I think we're on the cusps of something which will be (a) far worse than anything that's gone before, and (b) will have far more of an immediate and visible impact on pupils, and will be noticed by their parents.

    A parent has three children at a local secondary. The parent knows the school, and possibly went there themselves. Suddenly, they turn up at a parents evening and they don't know anyone. All the old staff are gone, though many are too young to retire.

    Their eldest's maths teacher isn't there (supply teachers don't have to do these things), the middle one has an English teacher who is French. The science teacher of the youngest can't tell you anything about their child because they've only been teaching them for two weeks. Which is strange, because you barely got to know the nae of the last one, as she was new, too.

    Half the teacher desks are empty. GCSE results are plummeting. The local paper says there's a funding crisis.

    The next day every child brings a letter home saying there's a shortage of history teachers, and despite advertising they can't get anyone. Do any parents know of any?

    All of the after school clubs are cancelled, as are any trips.

    Then begging letters start to go out. Studens expected to buy their own equipment.

    One of your children says their class has to be held in the hall because there are fifty of them.

    I believe a lot of schools are on the brink of many of the above. Previously it's just been whinging teachers. This will start to have a much higher profile than anything I've seen in my teaching career.
    Oscillatingass, cb324 and Shedman like this.
  20. peakster

    peakster Star commenter

    Teachers are always moaning though aren't they..

    wanet likes this.

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