The government are continuing to look into the Islamification of certain schools in the Birmingham area as I reported (from the BBC) before. Here, the anti-terrorism unit has got involved. This is close to my teaching and secular heart (from the BBC again):
Bloody awesome. [H/T Zoe Flanagan] OK, this is UK-centric. But man, this fricking NAILS everything which is wrong with education…
Timberlake, VA – Sports, sneakers, and short hair; it’s what makes eight year old Sunnie Kahle unique. It’s also what had her removed from Timberlake Christian School. Her grandparents pulled the plug on her time there after they said she was no longer welcome.
The family received a letter telling them that if their eight year old granddaughter didn’t follow the school’s “biblical standards,” that she’d be refused enrollment next year. She’s out and in public school now.
I don’t make a habit, as a teacher, of annoying parents. It doesn’t make my job easy. But I have spent the last week getting more and more incensed and infuriated over the claims and arguments I have been hearing on the radio and TV and at school. Why can’t presenters get some critical skills. Why can’t they challenge guests on false analogies and non sequiturs?
Wednesday 26th is an important day for the National Union of Teachers here in the UK. We have voted to go out on strike and I am going to do so, foregoing my pay for the day. I don’t take this action lightly, but then nor do I accept hat he government is doing to the education system lightly. I would like to elucidate on this and give the reasons to support my action.
Let me just prime you with this scandalous statistic: 40% of teachers leave the profession within 5 years.
The Guardian reports, following up from a story which I reposted here:
Experienced headteachers say they recognise ploy outlined in document about alleged Islamic plot to ‘take over’ schools
As a teacher, I cannot tell you how much this worries me. I will be striking later this month in opposition to this government push on ‘free schools’ an academies which is thinly veiled attempt to privatise education and politically liberalise it. I could bore you for hours on the ramifications and implications of such a stupid approach to education, not least adding in the utter stupidity of scrapping a national curriculum and assessment framework whilst neglecting to be organised enough to have something in mind and prepared to replace it. Total idiots. And yes, if I meet Education Secretary Michael Gove in a dark alley…
Jonny Scaramanga came to do a talk about his experiences with Christian education at Portsmouth Skeptics in the Pub recently. I was gutted to have missed it – I was really looking forward to that one. However, keeping a tab on his blog, it seems clear that he is embroiled in a right ding-dong with his arch nemeses, Accelerate Christian Education, or ACE. Here is his article ion the subject which he wrote for the Guardian.
From the BHA: Research published today by the Sutton Trust has reported that 6% of parents across England and 11% in London…
Genetics has a more powerful influence on pupils’ GCSE exam results than teachers, schools or family environment, according to a new study published tonight.
Researchers from King’s College London found that genetic differences account for 58 per cent of the differences between pupils’ GCSE exam scores – while environment (home or school) only accounted for 29 per cent. They also found boys’ results were more likely to reflect their genes than girls.
So I have written a number of times about Gove and his penchant for free market economics in school and his libertarian approach to education. And how it totally sucks. Well, his Free School initiative is terrible and is faltering as the days go by. Between Free Schools and Academies, he is doing a fine job of dismantling education.
This is a disgrace. This is what our schools are coming to given the government’s insistence that anyone can set up schools (Free Schools). This is just an excuse for ideological indoctrination. Here is an email the British Humanist Association sent me:
On the 17th October, teachers in my area will be striking. Here are the reasons why I support this strike…
I am a big advocate of the state education sector in Britain. I hate Michael Gove, the Conservative Education Minister,…
The Derby Telegraph has reported that Al-Madinah School, a Muslim Free School that opened in Derby in September 2012, is forcing all female members of staff to wear a hijab (whether Muslim or not), and is requiring girls to sit at the back of classrooms. The Sunday Times is further reporting that reading fairy tales, singing and stringed instruments are banned due to being ‘forbidden in Islam’, and the school’s (non-Muslim) head and deputy head were bullied into resignation by the governing body due to the latter being belittled and sidelined as a result of her lack of faith – leading to both lodging official complaints of bullying with the Department for Education (DfE).
Tim Minchin is a genius. Everyone knows this. But to add to his vast plethora of achievements, the acceptance of…
It is good that appropriate action has been taken over this, bad that US style evangelistic churches and movements are springing up and gaining traction in the UK. Sheesh. From the BBC:
Senior teachers at a South Lanarkshire school have been removed following a parent outcry over the involvement of a US-based religious group.
Religious conservatives on the Texas state textbook review panel have targeted for elimination high school biology textbooks that don’t include robust refutations of Charles Darwin’s theory of evolution by natural selection.
The panel, which includes several creationists, is urging the State Board of Education to reject any textbook that does not issue what it calls “disclaimers” on key concepts in evolutionary theory.
“How are the mighty fallen!” is a biblical verse that will not only be well-known by the Roman Catholic state school, the London Oratory, but now applies directly to them. The school – famously chosen by both Tony Blair and Nick Clegg for their sons – has just been criticised by the Office of the Schools Adjudicator for breaching the schools admissions code and ordered to change its policy.
Having attended a fascinating talk by James Williams (a science educator) last night at Portsmouth Skeptics in the Pub, I thought I would post about it. The talk was called Insidious Creationism and concerned Creationism within an educational context.