UK Election Debate: Education Special

The UK election is soon upon us and despite the much fanfared election debates, there has actually been very little in the way of real, problem-solving, debating going on…

chattering

…and even less debating of education issues.

But does it matter?

What good will come of debating such issues on national TV?

Well, to address this and perhaps throw some light on whether it matters at all, we are going to stage a debate of our own. The UK Election Debate: Education Special.

    Live from TV Centre

Brown: Yes, I am determined that children in this country will continue to benefit from the reforms that we have put in place that have seen significant increases in standards at all levels of education and we can look forward to more of the same

Cameron: Yes, I believe that children in this country deserve better and I’m the man to do it

Clegg: Yes, I believe that neither of you care about education like I do

Brown: We have invested heavily over the years to raise salaries, increase the number of trained teachers, and in refurbishing schools so that they are prepared for the knowledge economy and the challenges that face us in the 21st century

Cameron: We can do it better

Clegg: We could do it better than both of you

(….and so on)

Do we really learn anything from this aside from the vanity of partisanship?

It seems that debating is mere performance, carefully staged and meant to avoid rather than solve problems. And, discussing issues is of value only because those issues will be on viewers’ minds come polling day. But it has been arranged that only the issues that have clearly fixed positions that these parties traditionally reflect are touched upon.

This is why education is not on the debating agenda. No side wants voters to think about education because the response can’t be predicted or controlled. There are too many unknowns. Crime, immigration, foreign policy and other issues can because the battle lines are more clearly drawn. You either want harder or softer punishment, more or fewer immigrants, attack or retreat.

But with education, aside from corporal punishment (crime policy?), there are no simple solutions, stock responses or reliable positions. And this is why no politician will want to discuss it and this is why tacitly the three party leaders have given education a wide berth.

Hardly inspirational leadership. More ostrich than Henry V.

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