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Why is it so difficult to effect change in education in Scotland?

Discussion in 'Scotland - education news' started by gnulinux, Mar 30, 2012.

  1. gnulinux

    gnulinux Occasional commenter

    Anyone read this article?
    What do you think? How about ... excuses, excuses, excuses.
  2. gnulinux

    gnulinux Occasional commenter

    Anyone read this article?
    What do you think? How about ... excuses, excuses, excuses.
  3. Written by Bruce Robertson. Anyone who worked under him will know I need say no more.
  4. catmother

    catmother Star commenter

  5. gnulinux

    gnulinux Occasional commenter

    I don't think that this has anything to do with teachers resistance to change. The Scottish Educational System has seen more than its fair share of change over the last 30 years and we (teachers) have often gone that 'extra mile' sometimes to make even crazy notions work. The problem is that The System is based on command only. There is little or no control. The Leadership Class in Scottish Education don't want our feedback - that is where the real inertia lies - because they would see that feedback as criticism, and they just can't take that. The prime example of that is the SQA where the foul ups of 2000 have been replaced by what appears to be firmly battened down hatches. The least criticism of them is simply ignored. Where is the MacOfQual???

    As far as CfE is concerned the attempts to hoodwink teachers have failed. The real professionals never bought the 'rhetoric'. We know a snake-oil salesman when we see one.

    You can fool some of the people some of the time etc. etc. ...

    I can't disagree more. Watch this space.
  6. Dominie

    Dominie New commenter

    "Back in 2002, during the education debate led by Peter Peacock, the
    education community in Scotland agreed that fundamental change was
    necessary in the curriculum."
    Really? I don't remember teachers in my school sayong so. They were far too busy doing the day job. I do agree that there was a vague consensus that learning had become too exam focused and that teachers needed greater freedom from prescription but I cannot remember any teacher asking for fundemental change.
    "Why is it so difficult to effect change in education in Scotland? While
    Curriculum for Excellence is the example this time round, it is but one
    of a number that have occurred while taking the rhetoric of national
    policy into local reality."
    And there you have the problem in a nutshell: "national policy into local reality." National policy is driven by ...
    1. Politicians. They have no knowledge about education other than its political dimension: it consumes huge amounts of public spending and has considerable potential for sustaining political damage if things go wrong. (MRs recent about face on CfE was all about the political prospects of the SNP in 2014 and nothing to do with the needs of secondary teachers.)
    2. Scotland's educational establishement - HMIE, LTS (now under new management). For them it's about preserving their territory and keeping their leading roles in the system. They're helped by the ambitious wagon climbers wh want their share of the sweet trolley.
    3. Teachers. They're last in the queue because they have no political power and are usually too busy doing the day job. They used to be represented by a powerful union, the EIS. The EIS had a track record of successfully challenging new initiatives which threatened its members' working conditions and salaries. Not any longer ...
    The question we really should be asking is why we need these massive changes at all? They serve only to meet the needs of numbers 1 and 2 above. (Plus those greasy pole climbers among teachers who will spout any nonsense as long as it gets them promotion.) Massive changes like CfE certainly don't serve the needs of children in classrooms. Only one thing will serve their needs: highly educated, highly skilled, highly motivated classroom teachers.

  7. gnulinux

    gnulinux Occasional commenter

    Hear, hear. And another thing ...
    "The calls we have heard for status quo and arguments about 2+2+2 or 3+3 models are a distraction from the real issues and challenges".
    No they are not distractions! They are fundamental to the issue of the structure of the curriculum and therefore to the quality and relevance of the education that children in secondary school will receive. If the 3+3 model is adopted there will be a consequent narrowing of the curriculum and important subjects like e.g. Computing Science, will simply disappear. This is in stark contrast to what is happening in England right now. I am Scottish, but as far as Computing Science is concerned the English have got it right while we (or at least some HT's) are on the verge of making a fundamental error.

    See ...
  8. cochrane1964

    cochrane1964 New commenter

    100% spot on Dominie.

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