Διεθνή Media

The great academy schools scandal

the guardian - Sun, 22/07/2018 - 11:30
They were hailed as education’s great leap forward. But across England, the trusts that run them are failing

Kinsley Academy may officially be less than three years old, but its redbrick buildings stand as a reminder that there has been a primary school here, serving this rural, former mining community in West Yorkshire, for well over 100 years. Jade Garfitt didn’t hesitate to send her son, aged five, to the school: Kinsley born and bred, she felt she’d got an excellent education there herself.

But since he started she has become increasingly concerned. “He’s received one piece of homework this academic year,” she tells me over a cup of tea in the community cafe across the road. “He’s only done PE once since November. At one point, his class went two weeks without having their reading books changed. If you tried to say, ‘Look, there’s issues here’, you’d be shooed away.”

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Posh Boys: How the English Public Schools Ruin Britain – review

the guardian - Sun, 22/07/2018 - 11:00
Robert Verkaik comprehensively illustrates the stranglehold the public school system still has on Britain

Robert Verkaik could hardly have picked a better time to publish this. One notorious posh boy (Eton, Oxford) exits Her Majesty’s Foreign and Commonwealth Office, another (Charterhouse, Oxford) arrives to take over. No surprise there, but the nation, or the 93% of it that did not go to private school, is left wondering again how this crony class of bought privilege and vicious self-interest has managed to hold on to the reins for so long. Not least when – from Balaclava to Brexit – they haven’t run things very well.

Of course, it may be that the grockles and plebs are not very bothered. In his fascinating, enraging polemic, Verkaik touches on one of the strangest aspects of the elite schools and their product’s domination of public life for two and a half centuries: the acquiescence of everyone else. “Public schools have a mesmerising influence over British people,” Verkaik says, echoing George Orwell (Eton) 85 years ago. Verkaik says we are all seduced, not least by the innocent question: “Who doesn’t want the best for their children?” As a parent and a troubled posh boy myself, I understand him.

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A breakfast club is make or break for too many working parents | Barbara Ellen

the guardian - Sun, 22/07/2018 - 08:00
Pictures of parents queuing from 3am for a scarce place brought back worrying memories of my own struggles

Has adequate childcare become an unaffordable luxury in Britain?

More than 100 parents queued outside the Ysgol Y Berllan Deg primary school in Cardiff from 3am last week to secure a free breakfast club place for their children. Places were limited, and allocated on a first come, first served basis. So the parents queued outside, sitting on camping chairs from the early hours. It was reminiscent of when people used to queue outside department stores for big sales items – the massive telly or the leatherette three-piece suite.

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A quick note to say… thank you to my tough old schoolmaster

the guardian - Sun, 22/07/2018 - 07:59

Gordon Fermer, a retired accountant, 79, says his old teacher pushed him and made him study

Gabby Lower was infamous at my secondary school: he had a bamboo cane, and he certainly used it. I remember him once asking everyone to hold out their hands and those with dirty fingernails got their hands caned. Another time he asked us to put the words ‘their’ and ‘there’ in the right context, and those who didn’t get it right were caned. He was very strict: he’d say to us, you’re going to do what I want you to do.

But as well as being strict, he was fair. Of course, his methods would be heavily and rightly criticised today, but here’s the point: Gabby Lower was the first person who really made me work. I’d never got down to studying before. I was very into sport, but had never done much in the classroom – and having him as my form teacher changed everything.

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'I was trapped in my mind for a decade, now I'm going to be a dad'

bbc education - Sun, 22/07/2018 - 02:35
Martin Pistorius had locked-in syndrome for more than a decade. Now he's about to become a father.
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There Is Life After Campus Infamy

NYTimes - Sat, 21/07/2018 - 13:00
How five people recovered — or vanished — after intense scrutiny at an early age.
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Richard Ovenden, Bodley’s librarian: ‘I don’t want to screw it up. That's on my mind’

the guardian - Sat, 21/07/2018 - 10:00

The author and Oxford fellow on the joys of the city’s Covered Market, the importance of tea and debating with his daughter

I go to sleep quickly. I need a minimum of six hours and I like to be in bed by 11pm. I often wake up in the night, so I’ll go downstairs to get a book – anything from Zadie Smith to John le Carré – to read. I’m awake when the alarm goes off at 6.25am. My wife is an artist, so she has a different routine; in the morning, we converse amicably, but briefly!

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Richard Ovenden, Bodley’s librarian: ‘I feel a huge responsibility. I don’t want to screw it up’

the guardian - Sat, 21/07/2018 - 09:00

The author and Oxford fellow on the joys of the city’s Covered Market, the importance of tea and debating with his daughter

I go to sleep quickly. I need a minimum of six hours and I like to be in bed by 11pm. I often wake up in the night, so I’ll go downstairs to get a book – anything from Zadie Smith to John le Carré – to read. I’m awake when the alarm goes off at 6.25am. My wife is an artist, so she has a different routine; in the morning, we converse amicably, but briefly!

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Student holiday jobs: it’s pay tax now and reclaim later, after rules change

the guardian - Sat, 21/07/2018 - 09:00
Special tax-free status has ended - now temporary staff will be taxed like any other worker

Students taking short-term holiday jobs this summer face paying income tax and national insurance after a little-known change in the tax rules a few years ago, accountants have warned.

Those starting temporary jobs as waiters, bar staff, cleaners and fruit pickers in the coming days face being taxed as any other worker if they earn more than £987 in a single month, tax advisers Blick Rothenberg said this week.

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Hinds pledges to help teachers overwhelmed by excessive workload

the guardian - Fri, 20/07/2018 - 20:14

Education secretary pledges to do more to tackle stress that is driving qualified staff away

The education secretary, Damian Hinds, has admitted that too many teachers in England are being overwhelmed by excessive workload and has pledged to do more to relieve the causes of stress that have been pushing qualified staff out of the classroom.

The move came as Hinds argued that schools are on a par with the NHS as a “special case” for extra government spending, as behind the scenes negotiations over funding continue to delay any announcement on a pay rise for teachers.

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We can’t paint over our racist past | Letters

the guardian - Fri, 20/07/2018 - 19:27
Manchester university students defacing a Kipling poem draws mixed responses from readers

I read the article about how at the University of Manchester the students painted over the Kipling mural and replaced it with a Maya Angelou poem (Report, 20 July). How disappointing. It seems England is following the same path as the US where our 19th- and early 20th-century racist past is concerned. We cannot go back and undo what was done but we can learn from them. Whitewashing the past, pretending it did not happen is not how we learn.

In the US we are also selective in what monuments etc we tear down. Statues of Robert E Lee and other southerners must be torn down immediately, but the golden statue of a northern general in New York’s Central Park must not be touched, even though William T Sherman turned to the same scorched-earth policies against the Native Americans after the civil war in one of our most shameful periods of racism. Then I ask the question why Maya Angelou? Was there not an English poet who would better represent England, or maybe an Indian poet from the same generation as Kipling?
Sonia Romaih
San Diego, California, USA

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Wellbeing is a nice buzzword. But when employers use it, ask why | Emily Reynolds

the guardian - Fri, 20/07/2018 - 14:03

Poor employee mental health is not treated with the humanity it requires – instead, it’s seen as a risk, or a barrier to profit

The student mental health crisis shows no sign of abating: in the year to July 2017 alone, 95 students killed themselves, and many report impossibly threadbare services and overworked staff unable to help. One recent study also found that the UK student suicide rate had risen by 56% in 10 years – a clear sign that something needs to be done.

It’s therefore shocking news that universities including Hull, Wolverhampton and Essex are outsourcing mental health services, referring students not to trained, on-campus mental health professionals but to (already comically stretched) NHS pathways. Most noticeable in this shift is the total rebrand of mental health services – which are now, in many universities, simply referred to as “wellbeing services”. Counsellors are being asked to reapply for their jobs, now titled “wellbeing practitioners”, and a focus is being placed on “healthy eating, mindfulness, and stress-relieving activities such as yoga, meditation and campus walks”.

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Du tirage au sort… au mérite, l’année où Parcoursup a remplacé APB

lemonde_edu - Fri, 20/07/2018 - 13:07
Emmanuel Macron avait promis, à l’été 2017, « une révolution de l’éducation ». Un an après, la table a-t-elle été renversée ?
Categories: Διεθνή Media

Förderschulen: Kinder in der Sackgasse

sueddeutsche_bild - Fri, 20/07/2018 - 10:15

Nenad M., der als normal intelligenter Junge auf eine Förderschule gehen musste, ist wohl nicht allein. Vieles spricht für eine hohe Dunkelziffer.

Categories: Διεθνή Media

I'm an academic, and I feel underpaid and over-monitored | Anonymous academic

the guardian - Fri, 20/07/2018 - 09:30

I receive more scrutiny and fewer opportunities than peers working in university administration. It doesn’t feel fair

I recently voted in yet another ballot on the possibility of industrial action over my university’s staff pay offer. This time around, I can’t believe that I am having to prepare to fight for recognition of the value of my work again. It feels doubly unfair since I’m surrounded by colleagues who don’t have to prove their worth over and over. It strikes me that we need to start asking serious questions about why academics are subject to so much more scrutiny and surveillance than their administrative peers.

When I joined my current university, I was appointed at a similar time and to a similar pay grade as an acquaintance. But there was one crucial difference: my role was academic, his was not.

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Saying goodbye to your child’s primary school? I never knew how much I’d miss it | Kay Holmes

the guardian - Fri, 20/07/2018 - 08:00
The little girl who once hugged me at the gates has moved on, and the change to secondary school has come as a shock

My first day in the school playground was terrifying. Everyone else seemed to know each other. Chatting, laughing clusters of comfortable, relaxed people made connections and bonded. I decided – out of sheer defensiveness – that was not for me. I would instead enter and leave the playground untouched by human contact. No chatting, no laughing, and definitely no PTA meetings or arranging the summer fair.

The parent-teacher association​ was all the cliches: middle class, do-gooding, ravenous for women’s free time

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