Some criticism today of my Sandy Ezekiel interview. Apparently I’m not giving equal opportunity to other political colours by having MP, Roger Gale and Cllr Ezekiel, appearing here.
I would like to say that Tony Blair, Steve Ladyman, UKIP, Pol Pot (I think he’s dead) and Joseph Stalin (he’s definitely dead) are welcome to contribute. I’m not sure about the ‘Lib Dems’, as they are almost dead and may not otherwise qualify as a political party but it takes all sorts I suppose.
On another topic in today’s papers, I had thought that schools were something to do with education and teachers were supposed to be focused on, well, teaching but The Times this morning tells us that schools are to be required to balance the social and racial mix of all their pupils under new government rules designed to end backdoor selection.
It writes: “In plans described as a “minefield” by head teachers, schools will also have to carry out detailed research into applicants to ensure they “attract all sections of local communities”.
At the same time they will be banned from asking about the financial, employment or marital status of parents before a child is admitted, to ensure fairness. Heads will also be barred from inquiring about a child’s “behaviour or attitude” at primary school when deciding on admissions. “
The paper comments that this move will introduce “An extra bureaucratic burden on head teachers when what they should be focusing on is raising the quality of teaching at the school. Instead, they will be bogged down conducting analysis for social engineering reasons.”
I’m trying to imagine how our local schools will handle this. I suppose they will divide their places into a proportionate mix of coloured jelly babies. Red ones will be those from solid, middle-class nuclear families with a good school record, green will be the total opposite, orange will be special needs and yellow will represent ethnic diversity. Can you imagine how much paperwork will be involved in trying to determine whether a school in Ramsgate has the correct ratio of colours and flavours in contrast with a school in Broadstairs? Forget literacy, teaching and standards, it’s all about diversity, statistics and pupil management. No wonder more and more parents in this country are making financial sacrifices to send their children to school in France of all places!