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The Venerable Gove

16 Jan 2013 17:46 #751678 by Tubby Isaacs
Come on, Bored. Feeling like a lone obsessive.

Gove's had some stick from Tim Loughton, one of the three ministers sacked in the reshuffle, who was interviewed by the select committee today.

Basically, Gove didn't care about child protection much. Surprise, surprise the department, was bureaucratic. Loughton has no idea why he was sacked.

Martin Narey of Barnado has defended Gove. Lisa Nandy already attacking him. Quite right too.
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16 Jan 2013 19:16 #751723 by Bordeaux Education

Come on, Bored. Feeling like a lone obsessive

Sorry, mate. I have realised that they keep teachers from revolting by tying them up in paperwork, if my experience is currently anything to go by. I managed to keep it down to an 8 hour day yesterday (not including lesson planning at home.
16 Jan 2013 21:18 - 16 Jan 2013 21:44 #751768 by Tubby Isaacs

That's a good enough excuse for me.

Sorry to hear about the paperwork.
Last Edit: 16 Jan 2013 21:44 by Tubby Isaacs.
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16 Jan 2013 22:21 #751794 by Bordeaux Education
Chalkface but yes. 5 weeks placement. I will write up my reflection in February
18 Jan 2013 00:56 - 18 Jan 2013 01:06 #752263 by Tubby Isaacs
Well for when you've got time to catch up...

Michael Wilshaw has turned into Monkfish.


Teams from Ofsted will carry out a wave of “simultaneous and focused” school inspections in individual towns and cities amid fears thousands of children are being given a poor education.
Official visits that had been due to take place between January and July will be concentrated into just a week to give a more accurate picture of standards in a particular area.

What's the problem? They just need to get those schools out from the LEA, and make them academies, right?


The watchdog will also attempt to intervene directly at those councils that schools suggest are failing to provide “effective leadership” under plans for a new local authority inspection system.

So the LEAs are supposed to be interfering in schools after all. Providing "leadership", of all things. Not providing services or anything so tangible.

Launching his annual report, Sir Michael said that deprivation did “not determine" school standards, warning that many well-off areas contained large numbers of failing schools.

No-one said it "determined" school standards, just that it was a pretty big factor. Of course these failing schools in well-off areas- wouldn't be full of the not well-off inhabitants of those areas, would they? My hometown's like that.
Last Edit: 18 Jan 2013 01:06 by Tubby Isaacs.
18 Jan 2013 01:04 #752266 by Tubby Isaacs
Gove's also under pressure from Graham Allen MP- who's Labour but did a report for Cameron on early intervention. He thinks he's found £405m of cuts.

Gove in Parliament previously had been less than convincing, with MPs of all parties showing concern. Disgraceful, Stephen Twigg asked him to be "honest". It's unthinkable Gove might have nicked money from something long term to open more free schools.
18 Jan 2013 01:43 - 18 Jan 2013 01:44 #752268 by Tubby Isaacs
Twigg has popped up to attack the Tories from the right.

More cadet forces, debating societies, and make state school kids more "resilient".


These key personal skills- some of us used to think these could be acquired by teaching subjects in interesting ways.

Exit Twigg, promote Nandy.
Last Edit: 18 Jan 2013 01:44 by Tubby Isaacs.
19 Jan 2013 11:24 #752812 by Anton Gramscescu
The perfect OTF conniption headline, merging two threads into one:

Grayling's School of the Humanities bids to open Free School h
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19 Jan 2013 14:53 #752886 by Bordeaux Education
Well, to be fair, secular organisations have as much right to be totally fucking stupid as faith organisations
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20 Jan 2013 16:31 #753109 by E10 Rifle
I really need to crank up my campaign to popularise Wilshaw's 1981-84 era "Spam" nickname, when he was head of lower site at my school.

And I might have to recirculate my most memorable anecdote about him, when he told a morning assembly what Catholic schools had over other schools - "they prepare you for life, but we prepare you for death."

This man, ladies and gentlemen, is one of the most powerful people in British education.

Well done Tubbs, on keeping this thread going. It's appreciated.
20 Jan 2013 17:09 #753117 by Tubby Isaacs
Thanks. There are too many for me to thank.

In another story about failing schools, the Telegraph included an interesting aside:


Heads and governors of the worst schools face being replaced by a new leadership team under plans to drive up standards in the state system.

But on Friday it emerged that the Government had concerns over at least 100 of its flagship academies – independent state schools with complete freedom over the curriculum, admissions, staff pay and the length of the school day.

For the first time, they are being asked to submit detailed scorecards to the DfE every six weeks monitoring their performance against a range of criteria including pupils' exam progress and attendance.

Heads are also expected to rate their school's performance from “excellent” to “of concern” in categories such as finance, admissions and the quality of lessons to enable officials to pinpoint where problems lie.

The disclosure risks causing embarrassment to the Government which has promoted academy status – and freedom from council control – as the key to driving up standards in schools.

Not that marking yourself is much scrutiny, but maybe Gove's a bit worried. He's expecting to sack a lot of his department, so it'll be a bit awkward if there are many problems uncovered. He'll have to either keep more staff on (and bust his budget again) or beg LEAs to do his job.
21 Jan 2013 17:59 #753430 by Tubby Isaacs
Gove today.

It is of course the case that leaks are a part of political life, and I tend to regard them all with equanimity.

I bet you do. You do most of them.

He was being asked about an unattributed briefing against Tim Loughton who had been very critical of Gove at a Select Committee.

‘Tim Loughton opposed transparency on child protection and sided with those all over the country who want to maintain a culture of secrecy. He thought publishing full Serious Case Reviews was a big mistake and opposed a proper investigation of the Edlington case. He had no interest in the details of what had gone wrong or redaction of the SCR. He strongly opposed Gove, special advisers, and officials in their insistence on trying to get to the bottom of the Edlington case, which he thought was a paranoid waste of time for no political gain because there was little publicity. His approach to child protection as a political issue was disgraceful.

‘Loughton spent his time pandering to pressure groups so they would praise him on Twitter. Loughton wouldn’t focus on child sex abuse unless it was all over TV and the DfE now has to pick up the pieces.

‘Loughton was a lazy incompetent narcissist obsessed only with self-promotion. Journalists should consider his actual behaviour when he calls for inquiries and attacks us for not taking issues seriously that he refused to handle professionally.’

Incredible stuff. Wouldn't you want to know who was saying this to the press if you didn't know? Loughton attacked you at a Select Committee, and you reply with this shit via an anonymous briefing. Classy.

Glad those days of Blair-Brown spin are behind us.
22 Jan 2013 22:13 - 22 Jan 2013 22:14 #753906 by Tubby Isaacs
Looks like a strike at the DfE. Thousand job cuts. Gove did more than Osborne asked him for, because he's that kind of guy.

Bet no-one will notice. Do you know how many people work at the DfE? About a quarter of 'em. LOL.

The only thing is that Gove's changing the national curriculum, adding an extra school year, changing primary, and facing a massive need for new school places(having banned LEAs from building new schools). Reckon there might be some work in all that?

And of course overseeing 2,000 academies. Any question the school doesn't answer, you write to him.

Last Edit: 22 Jan 2013 22:14 by Tubby Isaacs.
24 Jan 2013 12:53 #754692 by ChrisJ
I don't get the chance to post much these days, but as I'm having a dossy internet day, can I just take this opportunity to thank the thread regulars, notably Tubby, AG, Bored and E10. I always check it out when I get the chance to lurk and it's a great digest of the latest idiocy. And it's always reassuring to have one's suspicions confirmed.

On the other hand I'm starting to worry about how it'll be when it's time to return to work. I'm not sure how I feel about working in UK education at the moment...
25 Jan 2013 13:51 #755180 by Tubby Isaacs
Hey, good to see you back. How's Gloucs?

The Guardian managed to fall for Gove's "academies improve 5 times the average of commie schools" spin yesterday.

Luckily others didn't:

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25 Jan 2013 14:50 #755196 by E10 Rifle
And, of course, the increase in "failing" schools, despite improvements being registered according to other measurements, is in no way connected to Gove's all-schools-must-be-run-by-me agenda. Of course not.
25 Jan 2013 17:32 #755285 by Tubby Isaacs
You're defending low standards, I see. Do the same subjects as at Eton, with more strictness, and every school should do as well.
25 Jan 2013 17:36 #755286 by Tubby Isaacs
I'm actually wondering whether this latest push to fail more will actually backfire on its own terms. It's noticeable how many of the academies praised by Gove are in London.

Why might there be more interest there from the big boy chains than in, say, Hartlepool, eh?

I'm not a fan of academies as you know, but at least the people taking schools over should be the A team. I reckon the Chuckle Brothers might be OKed for some cheaper parts of the country.
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25 Jan 2013 17:48 #755293 by E10 Rifle
The demonstrably stupid Toby Young - part of the A team?
25 Jan 2013 21:49 #755382 by Tubby Isaacs
His is a free school. There aren't very many of them.

Academies are where the numbers are. When LEA-NUT-Bolshevik schools don't make their target, they're supposed to get handed over to "sponsors". It's been noted that the better sponsors (eAct, Harriss, ARK- none of which have been unalloyed successes) operate in London.

Outside London, there seems to be less interest in being a sponsor already. Having even bigger numbers needing a sponsor will create a lot of problems, I think.
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