Saturday, 2 May 2015

Harebrained political dogma set against educational excellence!

By Stanley Collymore

I’ve been extremely fortunate and, furthermore, consciously exceedingly grateful as well that education in all its various forms has played a considerable role both as a student and significantly so as a practitioner too throughout my life. And passionate as I am about it I have always endeavoured to do my very best to ensure that I delivered, in whatever way I was able to, the very best in that specific regard which I could possibly deliver to others in my care.

However there are times, even with the best of intentions that one altruistically has both in mind and at heart, that the incredibly dumb activities and dogmatic posturing of others can and do make that specific undertaking a tremendously difficult and tedious one, causing a massive rethink on one’s part relative to the wisdom of carrying on against overwhelming and markedly destructive odds, or else after much soul-searching perceptively moving on to pastures green where the environment is incontestably far better and unconditionally affords one the distinct opportunity not only to practise one’s skills as they were supposed to be but also and quite fortunately additionally be put in a position to cheerfully deliver to one’s students, irrespective of whether they’re in their formative years, engaged in accompanying studies, tertiary, extra-curricular or adult education, the very best opportunities possible to appreciably explore, expand on and fully utilize their god-given talents and capabilities.

And that’s what I deliberately and, very much so, unapologetically did when I voluntarily quit the English Educational System whose purblind autocrats in charge of it had purposely and dogmatically commenced the rather appalling and, by and large, highly detrimental process of rigorously and concertedly dumbing-down our educational system and replacing it with one where admirable standards no longer counted for anything at all while, at the same time, most energetically encouraging and actually catering for the lowest common denominator that quite characteristically and asininely on the part of these ostensibly educational nerds became paramount to say the very least.

Therefore, my determinedly conscious and level-headed decision to leave Britain as a direct consequence of the aforementioned circumstances and moreover do so explicitly for educational venues that vigorously encouraged, markedly appreciated and diligently practised the same perceptions regarding education and its dispensation as concurred with my own, and not taken lightly on my part, is one which truthfully I’ve never regretted for a solitary moment, and furthermore would do it all over again if I had to!

That’s why when a booklet entitled “Vote for Education” and published by the British National Union of Teachers that previously I was an energetic member of when I taught in England, was discovered pushed through the letter box of my English home, I naturally decided to read what it had to say and on doing so was tremendously impressed, I must say, by its inspiring contents and distinctively so the forward written by Christine Blower, the NUT’s General Secretary that encapsulates my own views. And to that end I’ve chose to reproduce that forward in full here and heartily encourage you to read it thoroughly for yourself and then analytically judge where exactly it is that you want education, in the 21st century, to be heading for here in Britain. So here’s that forward that I promised you:

“Politicians should listen to parents and teachers. The 7 May general election will be a watershed for education in your community. We all have a golden opportunity to speak up for education. The NUT believes that every child and young person should be valued – that’s why we argue for action to tackle child poverty and to create a flexible and inclusive curriculum that’s accessible to every learner.

We [also] believe the role of teachers should be valued – that’s why we argue for teachers with the right qualifications in every classroom. We believe the vital links between parents, schools and communities should be valued – that’s why we [similarly] argue that local authorities should be responsible for schools; not a remote Secretary of State.

“The education policies set by the Westminster Government have a major impact on what happens in classrooms. Current policies are taking the education system in the wrong direction. Our manifesto makes recommendations for priorities and policies to benefit all children. [And] we are asking that the next government adopts them. Please show this manifesto to friends, colleagues and neighbours.”

Christine Blower, General Secretary.

The NUT’s petition can be accessed at:

In closing, and from me, well done Christine Blower! And all the very best!

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