comment that: "The education system is working
in the same way that dying cures illness." is really quite apt
and probably in a much broader sense than his article infers.
Bureaucracy has been a major component of schools, at least since the
days of Thatcherism back in the 1980s. Accountability was her Government's
watchword. Unfortunately, this led to a lot of mistrust, spying on others
in 1984 Orwellian fashion, and leading now in 2016 to Tory Machiavellianism.
Furthermore, the interests of large corporations and multinationals, intent
on creating more consumers, has completely diluted the role of education
as a nurturing ground to equip children and young people with the broadest
tools they require to progress with ongoing fulfilment, in a rapidly changing
Instead, we are told that it is good to strive hard for wealth through
menial work, that we should be prepared to survive on as little as possible,
with the promise of eventual freedom from such servitude, whilst at the
same time witnessing the corruption and greed of those who set the 'moral'
examples in our ever increasingly jaundiced society - held in check by
fear of terrorism balanced with lavish celebrity-driven television shows
that only offer young people unrealistic expectations on a par with winning
the lottery jackpot.
Returning to school, not only have I witnessed the poor quality of some
exam-board produced materials being riddled with errors, but the pettiness
of some of the detail required to answer questions is outrageous. And
often, none of this detail really matters at the levels being tested.
Understanding of method is ridden over roughshod for getting the right
answer from a one-off example that no longer has contemporary validity.
If teachers and savvy parents are not disillusioned by some of the material
their children are given, or bring home to work with, then they must be
either blind, brainwashed, or hypnotised, into thinking this is part of
Keeping children behind closed doors in segregated buildings in the 21st
Century is no longer a normal situation. Either we must take personal
responsibility within the family for educating our own children, or we
must agree that all we wish to do is produce good little consumers. If
the latter is true, then why not give schooling over to corporations -
via Academies or otherwise? Let our children have the best training in
berger-making with no expense spared on up-to-date equipment. If that's
where most of them are headed after school or university anyway, why delay
the inevitable with middleman state schooling? Put the money saved into
the NHS and old people's care - after all, we no longer have people with
disabilities and no one is allowed to die anymore!
argues that the more time children spend in the classroom, the worse they
do at school because our narrow education system only rewards a particular
skill set. He says that when you take failing pupils to the countryside,
they often thrive yet funding for outdoor education is being cut.
Classroom technology 'rarely used' by half of teachers
One of the reasons not mentioned for why teachers do not make more use
of their technology is that they are rarely given sufficient time, let
alone training, to use said equipment. Furthermore, my experience with
teachers and technology suggests that a short intensive training is wasted
if the teachers do not continue to work with the technology on at least
a weekly basis.
Children should learn mainly through play until age of eight, says
Lego - Richard's comments:
Government educational policies in the UK have taken little interest in
child development research over the past 20 years. Add to this that most
parents, whilst often struggling to make ends meet, have little time for
playing with their kids in creative ways - often leaving them alone with
electronic devices. A common complaint levelled at our schools, is that
literacy standards are low - which is no surprise to me, since almost
no one in education understands how 'normal' children learn to read. Current
state education promotes removal of children from situations where contextual
learning can develop naturally. Furthermore, children do not develop at
exactly the same rates in all areas at the same ages. With Government
obsessions of continually stressing children and teachers with earlier
and more assessments, tests, and ridiculous attainment targets, we have
turned an already declining education system into nothing more than factory
farming leading to sameness and mediocre productivity.
As a child of the 60s and 70s, I learnt a lot of skills and knowledge
through creative play and was fortunate to have parents who understood
its value. The Lego company may have a vested interest in promoting its
products through research into play, but I reckon most people who have
enjoyed many hours playing with Lego bricks won't mind their interest