Our Lords and Masters

Whatever its rights or wrongs, at its very least the British democratic system ensures that we are ruled by people we elect. If we don’t like them we can vote them out and they lose their jobs.

This is not wholly true. At the moment there are 18 Government ministers who are unelected, all but one of whom are Lords. Several are donors to the Tory party and many have been made Lords in order to do the jobs they have been given.  In some cases there are conflicts of interest between the jobs these people do and their Government roles. It seems unlikely that they have gone through a formal selection process. Continue reading “Our Lords and Masters”

Spare the rod…

One of the most difficult aspects in the modern education system is balancing the needs of individual students with the needs of the whole school.  Every student, whatever their needs, is entitled to an education.  In many cases, children’s problems are due to poor parenting and it seems unfair to give a child less opportunity through no fault of their own. Continue reading “Spare the rod…”

Teaching: short hours, long holidays?

It’s easy being a teacher – finish at 3pm every day, 13 weeks holiday – what’s all the fuss?

Here is the reality: 22 hours a week teaching, maybe 11 hours to plan half-decent lessons, 5 hours to prepare and tidy up during the working day, 5 hours to make phone calls to parents, enter data and do other administrative tasks, 5 hours marking and maybe 2 hours per week on average for meetings, parents’ evenings and so on. Continue reading “Teaching: short hours, long holidays?”