‘Gove’s academies: 1980s idea rebranded?’ by Mike Baker

BBC News, August 2010 “In education, if you wait long enough, most ideas come full circle. This week saw Royal Assent for the Academies Bill, one of the fastest pieces of education law ever enacted. But while it could have far-reaching implications, the Academies Act actually turns back the clock to a reform brought in […]

When is a teacher unqualified, @TristramHuntMP?

The question to be addressed in this short post is prompted by statements made on a number of occasions by Tristram Hunt, Labour’s shadow Education Secretary. Mr. Hunt has recently made a number of public remarks about how the Tories have been wrong to allow schools to employ unqualified teachers (E.g. here, here, and here). […]

Finland, Japan, Wherever Next? Labour Twigg Fails To Impress

The BBC report that the UK Shadow (in the broadest sense of the term) Secretary for Education, Stephen Twigg, believes “England’s schools should learn from Japan”. He obviously hasn’t been reading the Economist recently. “THE yells of children pierce the night, belting out the elements—“Lithium! Magnesium!”—as an instructor displays abbreviations from the periodic table. Next, […]

The NeverEnding Story of Educational Reform: UK PM Callaghan’s Ruskin College Speech, Oct 1976

For those who think Gove or any other politician is the answer to our educational problems (whatever they may be), perhaps excerpts from the text of the speech by Prime Minister James Callaghan, at a foundation stone-laying ceremony at Ruskin College, Oxford, on October. 18 1976 will make you think again. The speech proved to […]

If You Thought Things Couldn’t Get Any Worse: The Return of Michael Barber?

The word on the grapevine and now at least one UK daily is that McKinsey’s Mr. Targets himself, Sir Michael Barber, was all set to return as chief of the Department for Education. We’re not the only ones dismayed by this news as so were senior civil servants apparently. While other notables such as Chris […]

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