Archive for the Primary Schools Category

Does Your Child Take A Knife To School?

Posted in Britain, Child Discipline, Children, England, English Schools, News, Parenting, Primary Schools, Teen Violence, UK with tags , , , , on 29/04/2014 by floroy1942

It seems inconceivable that the British culture can so stoop to the levels where violence rules and our children are arming themselves to go to school. The number of knife and other crimes is rising steadily in the nations schools with children as young as eight being caught with an offensive weapon. A survey discovered that as many as 1000 children have been found  with weapons at school in the last three years.

Ready For School

Ready For School

These range from handguns, to air pistols, meat cleavers, axes, knives and even cutthroat razors. One child even had a taser, and you have to ask where did they get that from? From reports, many parents are complaining that schools do not do enough to stop the flow of weapons in the schools, but in my view, why should they? Those who are ultimately responsible for their child’s upbringing are the very ones who are complaining. What kind of parent allows a child to take a meat cleaver or an axe to school, let alone those with guns of various types. Their answer will be of course that they knew nothing about it, and then the big question comes: Why not?

It has been suggested that all schools have metal detectors placed at the entrances, which means we will eventually go down the same road as many schools in the USA. As a tax payer, are you prepared for the billions that would cost? The scary thing is that this survey does not cover the whole country for more than half of the police forces involved refused to release their figures. Forget not that the same situation exists in many colleges and universities in the country.

Young Girl's Also Carry Knives

Young Girl’s Also Carry Knives

You should ask yourself why children feel it necessary to take a weapon to school? The main answer is that all the other kids have one! But another over-driving factor is the fear that they may be attacked by another child. So where has all this hostility come from? We have bred a generation who refuse to obey all laws of decency and respect, simply because they were never taught to. In their world ‘it’s every teen/child for himself’. You may wonder where the violent streak in today’s teens has come from, well, you need look no further than the violent games they play on the computer for hours on end. Playing these games when not realizing they are just games often leads to a violent streak in children.

If parents had taken more time to teach their offspring how to behave, and to show respect for the laws of the land we would never have sunk so low. But as it is, many parents are more interested in being down the pub and the children can look after themselves. Many children stroll into the house at whatever time they feel like and nothing is said, no-one ever sits them down at an early age and teaches them right from wrong and how to behave. You can ask many parents at weekends, or of an evening, where their children are and they have no clue.

Killed By A Child In Her Own Classroom

Killed By A Child In Her Own Classroom

Just this week a teacher was stabbed to death by a pupil in front of the class. Anne McQuire, had served in the teaching profession for more than forty years and was due to retire in September of this year. She was much loved by those she taught, but that did not save her from a fifteen-year-old with a savage mentality. So how much further are we to go down this road.

This culture of violence has blossomed ever since uncaring parents passed on the upbringing of their children to child-minders and nursery’s, expecting them to do their job for them. Few children today have a proper upbringing because many parents do not take the trouble to teach their children right from wrong. And please Ladies, don’t give me that old excuse; “I have to go to work!” That is part of the problem, children coming home from school to an empty house with no supervision of their activities at all. Many parents today are happy if the child is watching TV or playing computer games because at least they are quiet and out from underfoot.

Young Thugs

Young Thugs

These days the newspapers are always full of children as young as eleven committing murder, especially of old folk during an attempted robbery. Because of the current laws they rarely get a proper sentence because of their age. We are breeding a generation of young thugs in many parts of the country, and one thing is certain, without someone putting a stop to it life will be hell in ten years time. Since the seventies, violent crime, even that involving children, has spiraled through the roof compared to fifty years ago. You can forget the government’s crime statistics as so much propaganda because it does not seem to include child crime which has been on the rise during the past ten years.  Do not forget, when children think they can get away with something they will go for the whole nine yards. It is time parents started taking responsibility themselves for the upbringing of their children instead of passing it on to others.

Roy.

The Creeping Menace In Our Schools

Posted in Britain, Children, England, English Schools, Immigrants, Muslim, News, Parenting, Primary Schools, UK with tags , , , on 18/10/2013 by floroy1942

Just about everyone knows about the shameful state of our education system caused by the lowering of standards by the previous Labour government in order to impress with high exam pass rates, but now a new problem has become evident that could destroy whatever chance our young children have of gaining a good education. It has been highlighted in the press recently that there are at least 240 schools in England where English is not the number one language, and I have to ask several questions about this fact.

First of all, how can it be that any English school must have a number of dual language teachers on the staff? What effect is this having on English children at such a school? Are the learning capabilities of English children, who are a distinct minority, being sacrificed in the name of catering to ethnic minorities? Why are immigrant children even allowed in English schools if they cannot speak the language? We will take these one by one.

Sacred Heart Primary School in Tipton

Sacred Heart Primary School in Tipton

Sky News went to the Sacred Heart Primary School in Tipton to find out what the situation is. In the school a scant 5% are English, with the rest coming mainly from Bangladesh and Pakistan backgrounds. While most of the immigrant children do speak passable English and integrate well, there are still those who have not yet mastered the language and require help from bilingual staff. While every effort is made to teach the young children English, it is in my view not enough. I believe that English children will be held back by the teacher constantly having to explain in detail to immigrant children certain points they do not understand because of the language barrier. Where this is common-place, children with English as their first language will be sat twiddling their thumbs while all this takes place and it will put them at a distinct disadvantage. The ethnic mix within the school means there are children who speak Urdu, Bengali, Punjabi, French, Polish and Tamil as well as English. When the English children make up only 5% you can see for yourself where this is going.

Computers In The Classroom

Computers In The Classroom A Good Idea? I Think Not

I reported some time ago about a school that spent a huge amount of their budget on purchasing translator software for classroom computers to help immigrant children understand the lessons. Sorry, but to me they should be taught English first, before they start school not using such software to talk to their teacher and vice versa.

It is a fact that children learn languages very fast, and that is a good thing, but for any child to fully understand everything they are taught they need to be not only fluent, but also grasp what is said. It is a sad fact that many immigrant families take little or no action to ensure their offspring learn the language of the country they are living in. The main concentration is always for their mother tongue, mainly because the parents are not interested in learning the language of their adopted country. It is also a fact that many of the immigrant families, in particular the Muslims, have no wish whatsoever to integrate fully into our society. They want the perks that we offer them, but otherwise they ignore us.

Typical Multi-Racial Class At Sacred Heart

Typical Multi-Racial Class At Sacred Heart

The majority move into areas like Tower Hamlets, Leeds or Bradford, where whole sections of the community have been taken over by their fellow countrymen and they treat the place like an extension of their own country. When everyone around you is either from Pakistan or Iraq there is no incentive to learn the English language or customs, The area becomes an extension of your homeland. This is passed on to their children, and hence the problems when it is time for them to attend school. But more the pity that the education of the minority English children has to suffer while they catch up.

While the head teacher, Melanie Gee says that all lessons are given in English, however, Helen Pflaumer, the Ethnic Minority Achievement Leader (my goodness – what a silly title. Why do we need these people?) at Sacred Heart, said they encourage the children to interact with staff in English the majority of the time but “There may be an occasion where if they want to discuss something in more depth we can say use your home language if that’s going to be easier for you”. Fine, but what are the English pupils doing during this explanation? Answer:- Twiddling their thumbs because the lesson has to stop for them. OK, I admit I may be wrong, but to me this is dragging back English pupils who cannot get the benefit of proper flowing lessons because of the foreign language interruptions.

International Opinion

International Opinion

In my opinion, no immigrant child should be allowed into an English school unless they have an acceptable skill level in our language. They live in England for crying out loud, and should adhere to our way of life in these matters. It should not be up to the host nation to bend the rules to cater for these people, they moved here of their own free will, grabbed our handouts with both hands and were given a home to live in, so they need to comply with our rules and ensure they integrate properly.

When I lived in Holland, immigrants were offered free courses in the Dutch language by the government which lasted for about three months. They were sufficient to give pupils a thorough grounding in the language so they could communicate easily. Perhaps it is time for the British government to do the same. In my view, anyone wishing to come here should receive this course in English and take an exam at the end, and if they have not mastered the language sufficiently, should be sent back where they came from until they have an acceptable standard.

Immigrants must be told quite clearly that Britain is not a give-away state and they will not be allowed to enter unless they have a job. No unemployment benefit, no children’s allowance or health care until they have paid into the system for a minimum of two years. It must be made clear from the start that apart from their wife and children, Britain will not allow any further members of their family into the country except for a short visit. I for one am tired of us allowing in one man, who is then followed by his wife, children, parents, grandparents, uncles, aunts, nephews and nieces. This abuse of the system has to be stopped stone cold dead, and very soon.

The Labour Cabinet That Destroyed Britain

The Labour Cabinet That Destroyed Britain

If we go back to the root of this problem we find that the great architect of this grand ‘Multi-Cultural Britain’ was, as everyone knows, the previous Labour government who sold the entire country down the river. We have all seen the effects on the NHS, housing, jobs etc., but this current problem with children’s education is just the beginning of the aftermath, and a direct legacy of that government’s policies. Once these young children get into the next grade of schools we can only hope that their English language skills have improved enough so as not to drag their fellow English students down as they do now.

Newton And The Gun Laws – The Debate Rages On

Posted in America, Children, Government, Insanity, Justice, Modern World, Parenting, Primary Schools, Teen Violence, USA with tags , , , on 23/12/2012 by floroy1942

There has been a lot in the news about the Newton tragedy in The States and its ramifications on the gun debate, but now I find things have taken a weird turn. In the town of Harrold in Texas for instance, drastic measures have been taken to prevent gun crime in schools by arming teachers! Certain members of the teaching staff will carry concealed guns to protect pupils of the school from any repeat of the massacre that took place in Newton. The situation that caused many schools in The States to have metal detectors at the entrance has just got so much worse that now they have to arm teachers?

 Wayne LaPierre of the NRA

Wayne LaPierre of the NRA

The National Rifle Association of America (NRA) has just made a call for every school in the country to have an armed police officer on duty, and that is their answer to the many school massacres that have taken place over the last few years. As I write this I still cannot believe what I am hearing! For crying out loud, why not just give all the schoolchildren a gun and they can then defend themselves!!!!

Typical Gun Collection - Why is this necessary?

Typical Gun Collection – Why is this necessary?

Guns in the hands of people do no harm if they are mentally stable and responsible and you can argue that this covers the greater majority of gun owners in America, but what of the rest? It is no great task for someone with a grudge to get hold of a gun when the whole country is full of them. It is not difficult for anyone who is completely or temporarily ‘unhinged’ to get their hands on an assault rifle and go on the rampage. The past is full of atrocities committed when even people who have legal permission to carry a gun decide they want to kill a few people, and yet the NRA’s answer is even more guns!!!!

True - A Lot Of It!

True – A Lot Of It!

It is fair to say that the business of guns in the hands of private individuals, i.e. not the police or military, has proven to be a recipe for disaster in these times. True, the American people love their guns, and for sure any attempt by the government to ban people from owning one will be met by extreme resistance as one previous commenter has said, so you have a choice, either get rid of the guns out of society or continue to mourn the deaths of adults and children in massacre’s like Newton and all the others, for Newton will not be the last by a long way.

Compared to any other nation there is no contest, as can be verified by the fact that the USA is about the only country in the world where members of the general public can legally own a whole closet full of guns, ranging from machine guns and assault rifles to machine pistols and handguns.

Assault Weapons For Sale

Assault Weapons For Sale

It is interesting to note that the sale of guns, and assault rifles in particular have gone through the roof since the tragedy in Newton, in fact Walmart has sold its entire stock and is waiting for a new shipment. Its the same story all over the country. America’s fascination with guns means that some owners have their own arsenal of weapons and I can only guess the reason is its an American obsession based on its violent past. It makes me wonder why Congress doesn’t pass a Bill allowing people to buy anti-tank and anti-aircraft missiles also.

But perhaps the people should remember the old saying, “Live by the gun – Die by the gun!” Ok so I  changed it around but the meaning is clear and relevant.

The only way for there to be a real and lasting peace in the United States without one atrocity following another, is to change the mentality of the people and help them learn there is life without a gun in your hand.

Politicians And The NRA

Politicians And The NRA

The government response to the crisis is probably going to be the re-enactment of the ban on assault rifles but in my view this is not going to prove very effective for there will still be millions of other guns on the streets and in homes. There can be little doubt that the NRA will not sit by quietly while the government tries to limit the number of guns in the country no matter how well intended. They will fight tooth and nail to be able to retain the law as it is and don’t care a fig for those that die needlessly, even when they are children as young as 5 or 6. In the current crisis the best they could come up with is an armed police officer in every school, as if that is going to make a difference: “The only way to stop gun crime is to have more guns!” What a load of tripe!!!!

Roy.

U.S. School Shootings – Time For Change

Posted in America, Children, Insanity, Modern World, Parenting, Primary Schools, Teen Violence, Teens, USA with tags , , , , on 16/12/2012 by floroy1942

The United States is the only country in the world where a citizen can legally own a machine gun or other rapid fire machine pistol or rifle as well as the usual small-arms, and now once again the country is counting the cost. The ‘Right to Bear Arms’ is enshrined in the American Constitution and many are loath to see it repealed. For this reason its not surprising that often, guns find their way into the hands of a ‘nut-case’ or ‘deeply disturbed’ individual who goes on a shooting rampage like this latest incident in Newton Connecticut.

Some of the Traumatized Survivors

Some of the Traumatized Survivors

What has sparked horror this time is that most of the victims were very young children who were at the beginning of life but will have no chance to pursue their dreams. Like everyone else, my heart goes out to grieving relatives, but condolences and grief will not solve the core of this problem in American society.

It will not come as a surprise to many that such incidents are a regular feature of American life. The most notable school shootings add up to a total of 125 incidents since 1800. In these attacks, some 325 innocent people, mostly school children and teenagers have been gunned down by someone who thought they had been wronged and taken to the gun as a way of retribution. Included in this figure are those who have decided to commit suicide in front of their classmates. 325 may not sound many to most people but whichever way you look at it, its an awful lot of lives cut short for insane reasons.

Guns continually find their way into the wrong hands, and in this case the mother has been described as a gun freak so its reasonable to assume there were guns in the house. If there is no proper lockable storage for weapons in the house it was a simple matter for the son to get his hands on one. Time and again there have been reports of even very young children playing with a gun and killing themselves, or someone else through an accidental discharge of the weapon.

Is This Your Child?

Is This Your Child?

Whatever side you are on in the gun debate, laws that allow just about anyone to carry a loaded gun must be at the heart of this controversial issue, and now this law will come under scrutiny once more after this latest disaster. Following each new shooting the same old arguments are put forward but nothing is ever done because the gun lobby is so strong. People in the USA have to learn that the days of the Wild West are long over, and guns in every home is not sustainable in a modern day society. It is not acceptable for children as young as five to be taught how to fire a pistol or rifle, and for ten and eleven year-olds to accompany father on a hunting trip and shoot animals.

I fully realize that the American nation was founded at the end of a gun barrel but there comes a time when a nation must look past its history, and even a document like the U.S. Constitution needs updating to reflect modern times. America has the highest amount of gun crime in the whole world, anywhere, and when you consider everyone has the right to own a gun its not surprising.

It is possible that this latest tragedy might cause a spark of remorse in Congress, and maybe some headway will be made in changing the Constitution to ban guns for all except police and the military like it is is most civilized countries, but to be honest, I doubt it. As usual the country and its people will wipe the tears from their collective eyes and it will be business as usual – until the next time!

Roy.

Why Are Britain’s Children Unhappy?

Posted in Britain, Child Discipline, Children, Primary Schools, UK, USA with tags , , , , , , on 15/01/2012 by floroy1942

I was quite amazed to read the other day that half a million children in the UK are unhappy. But then I sat for a while and thought about it, and my conclusion was that I am surprised the number is so low!!

An Unhappy Child - But Why?

Many will ask what the current generation have to complain about, and then compare the material things children have these days with what they had when they were growing up. Considering that we live in a hugely materialistic world these days, where owning an iPad, iPod, 46in. colour TV or computer is supposed to make one happy, it will come as a shock to most that this is not what makes for happy children. According to a report from The Children’s Society, who interviewed 30,000 children between the ages of eight and sixteen, it is a loving atmosphere at home that ranks the highest with our children.

It is often said by ‘people-in-the-know’ that the most important thing is a two-parent family to ensure a childs happiness. Well, the report proves them wrong. When you think about it, as a child where would you rather grow up, in a home where mum and dad are always arguing, or with just a mum (or dad) who loves you to bits?  I think the answer would be the same for everyone.

Mother and Child At Play

I personally do not like the idea of a one-parent family because I feel there should be balance in a child’s early life, and balance comes from receiving guidance from a mother and a father. Secondly, I have always felt that after childbirth, a woman’s place is in the home for at least the first five to six years of a child’s life, not out working. I know, I can hear the indignant snorts and guffaws from here as you think to yourself, we can’t afford it! The wife has to work or we can’t afford our holiday in Spain. I can only say, for the sake of your child’s well-being perhaps you should consider Blackpool for a couple of years.

Many will ask why such a thing is necessary, but to me it seems very important to always have at least one parent at home when they are young. How else can you teach your child right from wrong, what is required from them, and most important, discipline?

Typical Creche

It does no good to hand your child over to a virtual stranger at the local crèche every day and expect them to teach your child the essentials in life and how to behave. The mother, or alternatively the father, should be with the child every day at least until they start Primary School, for by that time you will have taught them how to behave, what is acceptable and what is not, and of course discipline. Chief among these things, a parent will have shown the child love and a caring attitude that is crucial to forming the future character of a child.

The report also highlighted a stable home as being highly beneficial to a child’s well-being. It does the child no good if a single mother changes her partner as often as she changes her underwear. Constant change within the family unit was found to be very detrimental, whereas a stable household was considered most beneficial, contributing much to a childs’ happiness.

Arguing? - The Child Feels It Too!

A surprising fact that came out of the survey is that children as young as eight fully understand what is going on when mum and dad discuss money problems in their presence, and it depresses them. Children can be surprisingly sensitive to their surroundings, and what is going on or being said in front of them. I believe that in the very young its more the tone of voice that gets through, especially when they don’t understand the words, and a few unguarded sentences in front of young children like “How on earth are we going to pay the TV licence next week” (desperation) gets picked up whether we want it to or not.

As children get older they start to worry about their looks, which often makes them unhappy. A young boy or girl with the infamous spots breaking out on their face will start to feel insecure, which leads to a general feeling of low self-esteem and unhappiness. Children like to be one of the herd, they like to belong to a group and feel valued within that group. If they have fewer clothes, gadgets, or less pocket-money than their friends they feel insecure and a reduced feeling of ‘belonging’ can lead to depression.

The Curse of Growing Up

Not quite being able to keep up with your ‘friends’ is also the best way of attracting bullies, which not so strangely, is another reason children today are unhappy. In every school in the land, on every street there are the bullies. They are a plague that young people could best do without, for they cause indescribable misery for tens of thousands of children every day and was listed in the survey as a significant cause of unhappiness in today’s children.

1950 - Playing Cowboys and Indians

Its a hard life being a child these days. In my day it was all about playing and generally having fun, but today its more about ‘keeping up with the Jones’s’, trying to please your friends, and getting the latest smartphone first so as to become the centre of attraction (if only for a short while) . Times have changed and so have a child’s priorities.

Let's Make Them All Happy

The most important thing any child needs in life is a loving family, a safe and positive environment, the right conditions for them to learn and grow, and self-respect. Given these things any child will grow to be a happy, self-assured and thoughtful adult. All we have to do is provide them with these things!!!!  Good Luck!

Roy.

A Bungled Education System

Posted in Britain, Budget Cuts, Children, Conservative Party, David Cameron, England, English Schools, Government, Insanity, Liberal Party, MP's, Nick Clegg, Primary Education, Primary Schools, Teens, UK, USA with tags , , , , , on 10/09/2011 by floroy1942

Lancashire Hot Pot is a type of stew in which ‘everything but the kitchen sink’ goes in the pan, and this is probably the closest we will get to describing the British educational system at the moment.

Education is one of the cornerstone’s of any modern culture, and if you mess that up, you ruin not only people’s lives, but the future of the nation. So what has gone wrong in Britain?

Well, in a nutshell – politicians! If there is a way to mess up a perfectly good working system, politicians will find it!

Yea! Right!

Up to the beginning of the 60’s, we had a system of education that worked, and gave us many of the leading scientists, entrepreneurs and academics in the world. No one could touch us for sheer brilliance, not even the United States, who lured away most of our top scientists with promises of extravagant salaries (known as The Brain Drain).

In 1965,  Anthony Crosland, Secretary of State for Education for the then Labour government, introduced comprehensive schools. This was the catalyst for the de-fragmentation of UK education. From that moment on, we saw increased diversification into faith schools, technical schools, academies etc. etc. etc.

Each successive government since then has added its own few ingredients to the stew, and now today, we have a system of complete confusion, and on the verge of total collapse.

I Expected Better

I had hoped Cameron and Co. would have done something to fix the problem after 13 years of Labour meddling, but unfortunately, they have only succeeded in making the problem much worse by introducing ‘free’ schools, adding yet another variation to an already confused system. The kids don’t know where they belong, the parents don’t know which school is best for their child,  and the education staff are in complete disarray.

The evidence for this is everywhere you look. A youth that is semi-literate and unemployable, and teachers who don’t know what time of day it is! None of the ‘old style’subjects are taught properly anymore: history, geography, religious education, physical training, chemistry, and in many cases, physics.

A modern school: Teacher: “Right class! History is about the past, geography is where places are on the map, religion is about Jesus and all that stuff. – Karen, please pick up your pen dear! – Right, you can put it down now. – That was about all exercise which we call physical training. Next is chemistry, all about chemicals, and the last one is physics which concerns – errrr! Can anyone tell me what physics has to do with? – Jeremy? – Physical things? – Well I guess that is close enough. Right class, dismissed.”

Trying Hard But Getting Nowhere!

Sorry, just couldn’t resist it! It is indeed a sad indictment, when the education system of a country is so bad, that most of the pupils leaving it read and write like eight-year-olds. Sure, the figures look good when you see a 97% pass rate for GCSE, but when you consider that a twelve-year-old from 1955 could quite possibly have sailed through it, it doesn’t really mean much, especially in today’s hi-tech world.

Maybe we will have to wait for the next government (which will probably be Labour again so don’t hold your breath) for the UK education system to be kicked back into shape. But to be honest, I very much doubt if that will happen.

I reproduce a breakdown of the UK schools from the Independant newspaper which will probably surprise you:

Schools Graphic

3,446: There are 3,446 state secondary schools in England. The vast majority (about 2,950) are comprehensive in name. There are still 164 selective grammar schools in the country and the rest are either secondary modern schools or “high” schools (effectively secondary modern schools that choose to use a different name to describe themselves).

1,300: Within that 3,446 figure, there are 1,300 academies. The difference between these and those that remain maintained by the local authority is that they have the same freedoms as independent schools to set their own curriculum, hire non-qualified teachers and run their own affairs. There are, to complicate it further, two types of academies. There are those set up under the previous Labour government which have sponsors (education charities, private providers, independent schools and universities). There are 319 sponsored academies. Under the Coalition, existing state schools – firstly those described as “outstanding” by Ofsted – were allowed to transfer to academy status. There are 981 transferred academies.

10: A further complication is that virtually every state secondary school is a specialist school, specialising in one area or another of the curriculum. (There are at least 10 types of specialist schools including languages, science, maths, arts, sports, humanities and even rural studies.)

16,884: There are also 16,884 primary schools in England. Only a handful have decided to convert to academy status.

7,000: The picture is further complicated by the fact that about one in three English state schools (primary and secondary) are faith schools. There are just under 7,000 of these. They can either be voluntary aided or voluntary controlled. If they are voluntary controlled, the diocese or faith group has a far greater say over admissions. A breakdown of the faith schools reveals that there are 6,955 Christian state schools (mainly Church of England or Roman Catholic but with a handful of Methodist schools, too), 36 Jewish, six Muslim, two Sikh, one Hindu, one Greek Orthodox and one Seventh Day Adventist.

24: To this mixture can now be added the free schools: 24 of which have opened up for the first time this September. David Cameron has said he wants this figure to rise to the early hundreds in the next few years. Once it is set up, a free school has the same freedoms as an academy. The difference is that it is a new school started by a variety of parents’, teachers’ or faith groups (or education charity). It is also possible for a free school to be a faith school, but it must offer 50 per cent of its places to non-believers – a requirement not asked of mainstream faith schools.

2,415: To add to the mix, there are 2,415 independent schools: 1,625 primary and 790 secondary. These educate about 7 per cent of the school age population.

372: The picture elsewhere in the UK is simpler than in England. In Scotland there are 372 secondary schools, all comprehensive in intake. Of these, 53 are faith schools (all Catholic). There are 2,099 primary schools, 318 of which are denominational or faith schools, 314 Catholic, three episcopal and one Jewish.

1,435: In Wales, there are 1,435 primary schools and 222 secondary schools. All the secondary schools are fully comprehensive.

My thanks to the Independent.

From the above it is clear that some schools, e.g. acadamies, even have the power to hire unqualified teachers!!!

GCSE – A Worthless Piece Of Paper

The current mess has been criticised by no less than Professor Alan Smithers, a senior adviser to the Commons Education Select Committee, who said our education system is a ‘liquorice allsorts’ kind of system. He too argues that all children should have an equal opportunity for a good education. At the moment it is clear they do not.

There is but one way for education to go: One standard school system for the UK, and one curriculum for all. Once children have left school, they can go to acadamies to learn specialist subjects. GCSE’s should be hard so that only the most gifted are able to go to university.

Roy.

‘Free’ Schools – You Must Be Joking!

Posted in Britain, Child Abuse, Child Discipline, Children, Christianity, Conservative Party, David Cameron, England, English Schools, Government, Insanity, Liberal Party, MP's, Nick Clegg, Parenting, Primary Education, Primary Schools, Religion, Teens, UK with tags , , , , on 04/09/2011 by floroy1942

At a time when most teenagers are leaving school semi-literate, it is essential the government take positive action to improve education, but in typical government style, they messed it up!

Misguided on Education

It has been announced that the first 24 so-called ‘free’ schools are open for business, and I predict the scheme is doomed to failure from the start. All it will do is ensure our teenagers leave school dumber and more confused than ever.

How on earth can parents, teachers and charities be allowed to decide their own curriculum? It beggars belief! Have Cameron and his cronies gone completely crazy overnight, or more likely, have they been listening to some of the crackpots in the system?

To begin with, considering most parents fall into the semi-literate category these days with standards of education that make them unemployable, how can they decide what their children should learn in school? Secondly, What the hell have charities to do with education? What could their input possibly be. How to wrap an aid parcel for Africa, or stand on a pavement collecting pennies! Perhaps a little simplistic for some, but you know what I mean. The point being, what makes charity workers and parents qualified to decide what is taught in our schools? It will certainly open the door to the ‘all-knowing’ crackpots who think they know best!

Pupils in School

I am so dumbfounded, I just cannot believe that any sane government would go down this road. It has always been essential that school curriculums be set by the government and taught in every school in the land. That’s why they call it The National curriculum for crying out loud! Only in this way can everyone be guaranteed the same level of education.

Doing it the governments way, we could find one school is teaching geography while another isn’t, and a different school could be teaching history while another isn’t.

But I Was Doing History!

What if ‘Johnny Fox’ goes to school in Nottingham, and then because his father gets a new job in Manchester, he has to change schools. They teach history in Nottingham but not in Manchester. They do geography instead! What is the child to do? Can anyone in the government answer that one for me? I doubt it!

Apparently, the Department of Education has only stipulated that English, maths and science must be taught.  Religious education must also be part of the programme and can be a single faith or many. It doesn’t stipulate that Christianity must be taught in a Christian country, but maybe that is so as not to upset the Muslims!

Let's Have Some PT To Fight Obesity

Why for example, have mandatory physical training classes not been introduced from primary school onward? We all know about the new boom in obesity, and many children fall into this category. Starting them on a regular exercise schedule, i.e. PT, from the age of five or six could be an effective way of combatting this.

‘Free’ schools, as prescribed by the government, will lead to hopeless confusion in schools, and for the pupils. The only positive things about the plan is that children will spend longer hours in school, and class sizes will be smaller.

It’s all right for Nick Clegg to prattle on about: “UK has one of most segregated school systems in the world”, but this is the fault of the previous Labour government. They allowed schools to ignore the national curriculum  in high immigrant areas, and changes to our education system by even having classes in foreign languages, like Arabic for Muslims etc. instead of insisting that all immigrant children learn English!

Muslim Classes - Evenings or Weekends

All children emigrating to England should attend national curriculum classes, and if they want to learn about e.g. the Muslim culture, they do it at weekends or evening classes run by Muslims. It is the only way they can properly learn about our culture and integrate. They are after all coming to live in the UK, and must adapt their lifestyle to our ways, while still being able to retain their own culture.

The coalition government it definately going in the wrong direction with this plan. I can only conclude that somewhere in the Education Ministry there is a nutter on the loose, and everyone there is listening to him/her.

Please God, Save our Country from total idiots!

Roy.

Illiteracy And The Internet

Posted in Benefits, Britain, Children, England, English Schools, Government, Immigration, Insanity, MP's, Primary Education, Primary Schools, Teens, UK with tags , , , , , , , , on 14/07/2011 by floroy1942

For many years companies have complained about the poor levels of reading, writing, and numeracy among our young people seeking work. Most are nowadays considered totally unemployable for all but the most mundane of tasks.

Charles Duncombe

Now a major ‘online’ entrepreneur has added his ten cents worth, and I believe it hammers home the message. Mr. Charles Duncombe, who is director of Just Say Please Group, has come forward to say that the low levels of literacy in the UK are now hitting the web-based sales market to the tune of millions of pounds a year.

He said:”I know that industry bemoaning the education system is nothing new, but it is becoming more and more of a problem with more companies going online. This is because when you sell or communicate on the internet 99% of the time it is done by the written word.”

At Least Dorothy Perkins Hires Semi-Literates

According to him, the problem is bad spelling on websites that put off potential customers who may think the site is bogus or untrustworthy. When recruiting staff for his company he was “shocked at the poor quality of written english“.

Giving an example of the impact on internet sales, he had measured sales per visitor on his ‘tightsplease.co.uk’ site and found sales jumped significantly after a spelling mistake had been corrected. He said: “If you project this across the whole of internet retail then millions of pounds worth of business is probably being lost each week due to simple spelling mistakes,”

If You Don’t Know, There’s No Point In Telling You. Duh!

Mr. Duncombe was astounded at the poor levels of spelling and grammar from both school and university graduates. When writing a curriculum some even used ‘text speak’ (i.e. replacing the word ‘for’ with 4 for example). He went on to say that given a simple spelling test, most were hopelessly inadequate without access to a computer spellchecker.

Even our last Prime Minister was afflicted. Gordon Brown was a notoriously poor writer, due supposedly to his bad eyesight. In a letter to the family of a soldier killed in Afghanistan he made several mistakes which led to arguments over who should check his correspondence before it was sent.

The CBI’s head of education and skills, James Fothergill,  echoed Charles Duncombe’s statement by saying, ‘he was shocked at the number of companies who feel it necessary to give extra literacy classes to potential recruits just to get them up to the required level of competence. He said:  “Our recent research shows that 42% of employers are not satisfied with the basic reading and writing skills of school and college leavers and almost half have had to invest in remedial training to get their staff’s skills up-to-scratch”.

It looks very much like this will be the pattern in the future for UK companies, and it will not end until the education system is sorted out. It is not necessarily the fault of the youth themselves, for they have been let down badly by the education system as a whole, which has steadily declined in excellence since the 1950’s. Now, even the teachers could not pass an old-style exam for literacy and numeracy. It’s the blind leading the blind!

Says It All Really!

When you consider that over a hundred years ago this country began the Industrial Revolution, and fifty years ago we had the best scientists in the world, today’s picture is more than grim. Both Tony Blair and Gordon Brown have much to answer for, for there is little doubt they have destroyed the very foundations of our country (i.e our education system) by turning the majority of people into semi-literates with no prospect of decent employment.

The Dole Queue-The Future For Britain’s Dumb Youth

This is already starting to impact our Benefits System with an ever-increasing number of young people on the dole, and it will get worse until it becomes unsustainable.

From now on it looks like the United Kingdom will have to rely on immigrants for brains!

Roy.

Will Reading For Pleasure Become A Lost Art?

Posted in Britain, Children, England, English Schools, Primary Education, Primary Schools, Teens, UK with tags , , , , , , on 17/05/2011 by floroy1942

To curl up on the sofa with a good book is one of the few pleasures that costs little and can be most satisfying, but it seems among the young this past-time is soon to die out, especially among boys. The problem is, poor reading standards in youngsters leaving school, means they are less likely to read a book purely for pleasure later in life.

According to research carried out by the publisher Pearson in Britain, boys do not have the attention skills to get past the 100th page of a book. In fact, most lose interest after only a few pages. Many will not even open a book if they see it has more than 200 pages.

School Reading

It has been known for some years that the attention span of young people today is very short, especially in school, which among other things has led to a marked decline in the level of education among school-leavers.

According to the research, the number of pupils reaching a satisfactory reading level in schools last year is shown to be 79% for girls and only 64% for boys, while the overall performance in English was 85% for girls and 76% for boys.

It could be that the education system should bear some of the blame for this disparity because of the “traditional” books used in schools. While girls may become enthralled with a novel by Jane Austin or a play by Shakespeare, it’s not quite the sort of story boys would be interested in. Not that schools should start using James Bond novels of course! 

I can however understand the reluctance of today’s youth in wanting to study the works of someone who has been dead for hundreds of years. For what sort of relevance do the works of Jane Austin and Shakespeare have in today’s world unless you wish to become an academic?

Why Read:

http://youtu.be/xThol-ydwco

My wife is currently studying for her Masters Degree in translation and is up to her eyeballs in Johnathan Swift, an Anglo-Irish satirist who lived in the latter half of the 17th century. I have often wondered at the relevance of studying such a person in the 21st century, especially with regard to translation, but it is required. True, we cannot afford to forget history and past masters in the literary field, but it makes me feel that to a certain extent, education is stuck in the middle ages.

I'd Rather Be On My Computer!

To try and get a young person of today interested in perhaps Shakespeare’s “A Midsummer Nights Dream”, is like trying to set fire to water. The two just don’t mix! Today there are too many distractions in life for the youth to have anything more than a fleeting interest in such things. They would much rather be on the computer playing games or socializing. 

In my opinion, if schools want to raise youth awareness to the pleasures of reading, and more importantly improve reading standards, they will need to come up with a whole new library of books that young people can engage with. Without a doubt, parents can also influence their children’s reading ability, and generate a love of books as a hobby in the home.

You will have to excuse me now as I wish to get back to my book – Winston Churchill’s History of the Second World War. Volume Two (sigh).

Roy.

Should A Child Learn History?

Posted in Britain, Child Discipline, Children, England, English Schools, Government, Primary Education, Primary Schools, Teens, UK with tags , , , , on 14/03/2011 by floroy1942

It has recently been revealed by Ofsted that the English education system is once again failing our school children (no surprise there), this time by the state schools inability to teach history properly.

The report severely criticises the government for not setting the proper standards, and allowing schools to drop the subject when children reach the age of 13. This age is the lowest in Europe where all pupils continue with history lessons to the age of 15 or 16. Thank goodness this does not apply to independent schools who continue with the subject. State secondary schools on the other hand are squeezing history out of the curriculum in favour of ‘general humanities’ courses, where subjects like history and geography are clumped together.

This malaise in our education system is nothing new, for our children have had huge gaps in their learning for many years, initiated by the previous labour government. Ask any child or teenager about important dates in english history and all you get is a blank stare. The British have perhaps the richest history of any nation on earth, but our youth know next to nothing of it. It is no wonder we have such a lack of patriotism in the country among recent generations.

Magna Cart

History is the founding cornerstone of patriotism in any country, ask the Americans! No-one is more patriotic, and I can guarantee they have a solid knowledge of their history. Meanwhile, in Britain our children have never heard of the Magna Carta, and think that Cromwell won the Battle of Hastings in 1066.

Some schools have been accused of just ‘scratching the surface’ of the subject by skipping everything up to Henry VIII and then going on to Victorian Britain or WW2. Not surprisingly, this has led to a great amount of confusion among students who cannot fill in the gaps, and have no idea of the chronology of events. There is little doubt that the teaching profession has also been at fault here, for few teachers have an in-depth knowledge of our history, and if they don’t know much about it, how can the children learn properly?

Is This All We Can Feel Patriotic About?

It is indeed sad when the only event that brings forth patriotic fervour is a football match, for that is how it is today. We have lost all knowledge of our rich heritage, and indeed even respect for the Royal Family that was inbred in  earlier generations. In the sixties we were told: Be proud you are British!, but now that is all gone. we have been dehumanized by the failure of our education system and the current wave of pandering to the immigrants. It is sad when a German or Dutchman knows more about our history than the average ‘man in the street’.

There is little doubt that apart from the failings within the teaching profession, the previous government also has a lot to answer for. Apart from introducing legislation to prevent disciplining unruly pupils, they have successfully sabotaged the national curriculum in order to increase the pass-rates of exams.

Ever since the late sixties, early seventies we have seen a drastic decline in the standards of education in our young. This has in part been due to government interference in cutting back on ‘so-called’ less important topics like history, geography, physical education and religion. An ignoramus would ask;”Why do we need to know history or geography?”  Well! If you don’t know the answer to that there is no point in my telling you!

Failed By The System

For nations or people to be successful they need to know their roots and have pride in their nation and who they are. That is how countries grow and earn respect in the world, and not to forget the old adage: “Those who ignore the mistakes of history are doomed to repeat them!” The country needs to get back to a time when children are taught all they need to know and not just what some people consider ‘the important subjects’. Teachers should be required to have a thorough knowledge of their subject, and not ‘teach by rote’ from a textbook.

We have reached a stage in education where our children are leaving school semi-literate (4 out of 5 cannot spell correctly) and have a far lower standard than the immigrants flocking to our shores, so I ask you, who will run the country and have all the necessary skills for business in a decade or two? I leave you with that thought!

Roy.

You may be interested in my earlier post which is relevant to this subject:

https://floroy1942.wordpress.com/2011/03/05/young-people-today-unemployable/

Young People Today Unemployable?

Posted in Benefits, Britain, Budget Cuts, Child Discipline, Children, England, English Schools, Equality, Government, Human Rights, Immigration, Insanity, Modern World, MP's, Parenting, Parliament, Political Correctness, Primary Education, Primary Schools, Teen alcohol abuse, Teen Violence, Teens, UK with tags , , , , , , , , , on 05/03/2011 by floroy1942

It will come as a surprise to many that UK business people consider most of our youth unemployable.

According to the Chartered Management Institute (CMI), 76% of executives agreed that young people lack the skills necessary for today’s business world, and not surprisingly, they blame the education system in the UK. They claim the country is heading for a significant skills crisis that will eventually damage the economy.

Their main concerns are young people’s lack of discipline and poor timekeeping (61%), a shortage of workplace skills (63%), and a bad attitude coupled with lack of ambition (66%). Naturally, this does not apply to all young people.

Sign of the Times?

I for one do not subscribe to blaming only the education system for the current crisis, as I consider modern social attitudes a major contributor. We are deeply entrenched in a period in history when our youth often requires, and is given, everything handed to them on a plate, and more importantly, many consider it their right! Sad as it may be, that is the general consensus of opinion among much of our misbegotten youth of today. Ever heard the phrase “I want it, and I want it  now!!!”

Children today have become so privileged they don’t need to do a darned thing to earn the things they want: “I had to buy my son a computer because all his friends have one!!!” – Sound familiar? I heard this from a close friend.

Friends of ours have a three-year-old girl who has so many toys, their house looks like a toy store. When received she plays with them for a few minutes and then they lie untouched, and if this continues, and it probably will, how is the child ever to value anything in the future?

This sort of thing has led to the attitude we see in many today who believe life owes them a good living. This is the fault of the parents alone, who must bear responsibility for this current viewpoint among some of today’s young people.

Exam Time – But I Know I’ll Pass!

To be sure, the poor standards of education are just another nail in the coffin if you will, for there is little doubt that standards have dropped drastically over the past three decades. The previous Labour government was to blame by continually making exams easier in an effort to massage the pass rates for GCSE’s etc. If you want to look good in the eyes of the public and show how well the education system is doing,  just lower the pass rate until everybody passes!

This attitude may have made the government look good, but when I see the levels of English in many of today’s young people it makes me shudder. They have been let down badly by the education system, for by far the greater majority are now semi-literate by old standards. They can’t spell for toffee, and as for putting a dozen words together to make an intelligent sentence, forget it! Have you ever seen ‘Teen Speak’?

You may be interested in a blog I wrote some time ago on this subject:

https://floroy1942.wordpress.com/2009/06/20/its-not-mi-falt-i-carnt-spel/

As a further example, take a look at the comments some people post on web page news items and you will see what I mean! Sometimes even the news items themselves show disgraceful errors.

See What I Mean?

In my opinion, not all problems within the education system can be laid at the door of government, for another contributing factor is the extremely poor standard of teachers. Many are hired before they are even qualified.

In my day, a teacher knew his subject inside out and you could ask any question and get a proper answer, today however, it seems some teachers do nothing more than quote from the lesson material book with little understanding of the subject in depth. Should some enterprising student ask a question they have to “look it up”.

I apologize in advance to those dedicated individuals in the teaching profession who do not fall into this group, for I know full well there are good teachers out there.

Yet one more facet to this saga is the interference of the ‘Bleeding Hearts’ Brigade (Human Rights/Politically Correct idiots) in our education system. Along with the collusion of a weak government of the time, they successfully stamped out any form of discipline in our schools by having laws passed that forbid any form of punishment for not paying attention, disrupting classes or even refusing to learn.

Physical Attacks a Daily Occurrence

Over the past two decades, more than 50% of teachers have at some time or other been attacked in the classroom by unruly pupils, some even with a knife! This is an intolerable situation, even more so because the current laws forbid any form of punishment. These same laws have given us a legacy of undisciplined youth that knows it cannot be touched, and feeds the rate of illiteracy like nothing else for they cannot be bothered to learn in school.

The Future For Many

There is without doubt a huge shock awaiting many of the current generation when they finally leave school and try to get a job. You can be fairly certain that too many will swell the queues outside the local Dole Office for they will be unemployable in anything but menial tasks.

So, because of our lack of foresight in educating and disciplining our young, we are creating a huge future burden on the Welfare System that may well be unsustainable. Not only that, and far more dangerous, we will become dependent on importing those with the necessary skills to work in industry, while our own people do the menial jobs that require no qualifications or skills.

The big problem is, can we go back to how it should be? I think not for it is next to impossible to go back!

Roy.

The UK Education System Just Got Worse (If that’s possible).

Posted in Britain, Child Discipline, Children, England, English Schools, Government, Immigrants, Modern World, MP's, Parenting, Parliament, Political Correctness, Primary Education, Primary Schools, Religion, Teen Violence, Teens, UK, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , on 09/12/2010 by floroy1942

The OECD

The system of education in Britain has been declining for years, so it is no big surprise that it fell from 17th position to 25th in world rankings in the last OECD survey completed in 2006.

It is no secret that today an estimated 4 out of 5 children in the UK cannot read or write correctly when they leave school. For a few moments, take the time to look at news items on the web and read comments on articles sent in by members of the public (A mild example: “OMG!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Thats a big fat joke wot the hell is this county getting like???”). It’s probably true that some reading this blog will find nothing wrong with this comment. Among a fair majority, the standard of written English is abysmal to say the least.

Is this an indictment of the government, the education system, the children, or their parents? To me it is more likely a combination of them all, but with some more prominent than others.

The 'Iron Lady'

Let us take first the government. Ever since Maggie Thatcher left the Whitehall ‘throne’ there has been a steadily increasing number of budget cuts to education. All the school playing fields, where children got their daily exercise through sport, have been sold off for urban development due to government cost-cutting. This is part of the reason why we have so many obese children today. Many school buildings have been declared ‘unfit for purpose’ due to an increasing lack of money for maintenance, and as for building new schools, forget it!

The Devious Duo

The education system itself has not fared any better. Since Labour came to power under Tony Blair, we have seen a continual lowering of the pass levels by way of making exam questions easier in school examinations (2+2 =? Select one of the following: 4, 4, 4, 4). This was the Labour governments answer to falling pass rates among pupils. Typical of the idiots we called a government; if insufficient people cannot get over the barrier, then lower it. It was a quick and easy fix which compensated for an inefficient education system, poor teaching methods, and made them look good.

It is also a sad fact that the national curriculum, as well as exams, have been greatly modified (or toned down if you wish), to accomodate the ever increasing number of immigrants that entered our schools during the Blair era. Instead of requiring immigrant children to learn english, we are now teaching in their language in some schools, causing disruption and chaos. It is just another indication of how we are pandering to the ever increasing demands of immigrants instead of insisting they adopt to our ways.

Generally speaking, teachers today are of a very poor standard with insufficient knowledge to teach properly without a teaching guide in front of them. This is in part due to indifferent teacher training, and in part to the significant lowering of standards over the years.

That standards have dropped, no-one in their right minds can deny.

It is also sad to note that many of the subjects I took as a boy, like history, geography and religion are ‘skimmed-over’, or no longer taught for they have become irrelevant in today’s ‘modern society’.

But history is the backbone of  patriotism, and because we no longer teach children the rich history of our nation, the only thing that brings out our patriotic spirit is football. A very poor substitute.

Ask kids today where Malawi is and they have never heard of it, unless it was on the TV for some reason. Religion is all but dying out among the young people of Britain today to the extent that many no longer consider it necessary to get married, even when they have a child. Once the old people are gone the church and its teachings will probably die a slow death.

To many, teaching is no longer a ‘calling’ but just a job, and this is evident in the fact that many teachers today do little more than recite from the lesson material rather than have a deep knowledge of the subject themselves. I call it parrot training!

As I say all this, I do realise that it does not apply to all, and there are still dedicated teachers out there who do their level best for the students in their charge, within the constraints of the insanity that governs British schools that is.

Another  major contributing factor is the removal of all forms of discipline a teacher may use against disruptive pupils. Gone are the days when you could be sent to the headmaster’s office for ‘six-of-the-best’ with the cane if you misbehaved, now a teacher has to put up with not only verbal abuse, but also physical violence from pupils. It was claimed recently that as many as 4 out of 5 teachers had been assaulted by their pupils at some time or another.

This brings us to the children themselves. Over the past three generations or so children have become more assertive and aggressive, a fact attributable to the steady erosion of all forms of discipline brought about by the ‘elf & safety’ and ‘uman rights’ groups that infest modern life. These self-righteous individuals have become the plague of our times, but to date, no government has had the balls to put them in their place, instead they have pampered them.

Caring Parents - Not Always!

In my opinion, the parents are also to blame for the lack of proper education in that many, if not most, do not have time or inclination to become involved in their off-springs education. Ask many and you will get the reply: “That’s wot schools are 4”!

These people do not realise that they also bear responsibility for their children’s learning by making sure they grow up as responsible human beings and have respect for their teachers and all others. If there is no discipline in the home how can there be any in school!

A Once Proud Nation

There is little doubt that the British have declined so far in stature from the days of empire, that we have become the laughing stock of most countries in the world. It is time to turn our efforts inward and stop trying to impress the rest of the world while we sort out the mess that has become Not So’ Great Britain.

Unless radical action is taken to restore high standards of teaching, discipline in schools, and respect among the young, we will soon find ourselves lower on the international education table than the poorest African states.

What makes it really sad, is that sometime in the not too distant future there will be no skilled English workforce if the education standards are not improved. In such a case we, the British, will be relying on immigrants to fill skilled jobs because our own people are fit only as unskilled labour. That may sound like an exaggeration, but who is to say it is impossible. We constantly ‘import’ skilled labour in some sectors already.

It will take a government with balls to carry out such radical change in thinking and practice within our education system. The problem is, how long will we have to wait before one comes along?

Roy.


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