Posts Tagged ‘NASUWT’

Teachers, if you don’t like being measured, fix the problem yourselves

08/01/2013, 07:00:03 AM

by Kevin Meagher

As schools started back yesterday for a new term, it must have felt like another upward trudge with a boulder for our leather elbow-patched Sisypeans. We know this, after all, because a recent poll found 55 per cent of teachers describe their morale as “low” or “very low”.

The gripes are familiar enough. As well as the usual complaints about pay and working conditions, 77 per cent of teachers in the poll commissioned by the national union of teachers thought academies and free schools were taking education in the wrong direction; while 71 per cent said they rarely or never felt trusted by the government, (up from 54 per cent in April 2010).

But it’s the issue of school standards that still seems to grate most. Last November, Sir Michael Wilshaw, the new chief inspector of schools, presented Ofsted’s annual report. It found that schools in England are getting better – although there is still a long way to go before the nation catches up with the best in the world. There are also wide variations in the performance of schools across different local authority areas, leading to serious inequities for children in some parts of the country.

The product of nearly 25,000 inspections across schools, nurseries and colleges, it is a rigorous and useful reminder of the challenges we face in making all our schools the best that they can be. However Sir Michael’s analysis of the problem is not entirely shared, it is fair to say, by the teaching unions.


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Monday News Review

25/04/2011, 06:49:56 AM

Another day, another dose of staged AV campaigning anger

A Liberal Democrat cabinet minister has widened an increasingly damaging rift inside the coalition by warning that the prime minister and other senior Conservatives could face legal action over the manner in which they have campaigned for a no vote in next week’s referendum on a change to the voting system. Chris Huhne, the Lib Dem energy secretary, admitted for the first time that the campaign against the alternative vote by senior Conservatives will make the coalition government “more difficult” to manage in the aftermath of the 5 May referendum. Huhne said the claims made by David Cameron, George Osborne and other Tories undermined their credibility. He is concerned about two claims made by the Conservatives – that a move to AV will need new counting machines, and so cost as much as £250m, and that it will favour extremist parties. He said: “If they don’t come clean on this, I am sure the law courts will.” – the Guardian

To say senior Liberal Democrats are desperate to secure a Yes vote for AV would be an understatement. With less than two weeks to go to the referendum on electoral reform, they have cranked up their rhetoric to fever pitch. Paddy Ashdown has condemned the campaign of those opposed to the Alternative Vote as ‘stinking’. Energy Secretary Chris Huhne launched a tirade of abuse against Chancellor George Osborne for pointing out that AV would be costly and complicated to implement. And Business Secretary Vince Cable has melodramatically portrayed the referendum battle as a fight between the ‘progressive majority’ and the atavistic forces of Conservatism. Yesterday it was Nick Clegg’s turn to whip up the hysteria, with a rambling diatribe against our traditional first-past-the-post voting system, and anyone with the temerity to believe it works. – the Daily Mail


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