Saturday, September 03, 2011

officer class?

Not sure if I’m amused (in a laughing maniacally kind of way) or appalled by the prospect of a new “free school” in Manchester which is due to be staffed entirely by former soldiers. It’s intended that the school (with army captain Affan Burki as headteacher) would offer students “ambitious academic goals, outdoor activities and a demonstration of ‘martial values’”. This coincides with an announcement from Mike Gove that ministers are to scrap a requirement for teachers to record instances when they use physical force, as a part of a wider move to “restore adult authority” in the wake of the recent riots. Tom Burkard (a research fellow at the Centre of Policy Studies who is on the steering committee for the planned Manchester school) – and someone who, no doubt(?), has years of experience at the coalface of education, has helpfully explained that “all the old remedies for poverty, under-achievement and alienation have been tested to destruction. The consequences were starkly before us on the streets of Tottenham and Croydon. But before we put troops on the streets, we should consider putting them in our schools”.
I think they’ve finally lost the plot….
PS: All this just happens to be emerging as the Ministry of Defence gave details of its redundancy programme and coincides with plans by the government to encourage former members of the armed forces to take up teaching, by providing sponsorship and a fast-tracked undergraduate route.


just Gai said...

Be afraid, be very afraid!

bigdaddystevieB said...

just realised that I referred to the Secretary of State for Education as "Mike".... this was a huge aberration and in no way indicates any "palling up" on my part. FAR from it!!