Losing Teachers and Good Quality Education for our Children - GOVE!

(85 Posts)

I just want to rant - over the past few days I have been reading on various threads about Teaching staff who are walking away or considering leaving education all because of the negativity from the Government and Gove and it really upsets me. It upsets me because some of you are obviously so passionate about your work but feel you have nowhere to go/can't work with the system. I want my child to be taught by valued and inspired teachers - what will be the state of education in a few years time when this man has finished destroying it?

Copthallresident Thu 23-May-13 12:10:25

TalkinPeace "Gove's good thing was to unpick the grade inflation ski slope and to remove the BTec anomalies."

This is the problem with Gove though, and the reason people are getting upset. He doesn't address the issues with well thought out plans that people can understand and see are fair I don't think there are many people who did not think the grade inflation problem didn't need tackling BUT the way he did it last year was hamfisted and showed absolutely no respect for the young people it affected. It affected pupils in an inconsistent way and for some it will affect their chances to compete with others for jobs and university places. It has left teachers struggling to know where the goalposts are.

He didn't look at the current state, issues and desired state and come up with a plan to achieve the desired state that was fair and understood by the stakeholders, teachers, universities, employers, pupils, parents... He just fired off some soundbites at OFQUAL and the result was what one of our local Tory Councillors described as a fiasco, with a lot of 16 year olds left upset and struggling to regain the confidence their schools and teachers had worked so hard to build up. Remember this affected all schools state and private, so that's a complete whammy. The Head of my DD's top indie has made it clear that as a result they have lost all confidence in the UK examination systems and are shopping around to find the best way of insulating their pupils from the effects of this sort of ham-fisted political interference.

nlondondad Thu 23-May-13 10:08:48

The problem that this thread is running into is that when a topic really matters, and people are passionately engaged in it, and most people feel able to have an opinion, it starts getting heated and , in places ill tempered. Yet what that really proves is that the topic is worth discussing and should be discussed. And actually the OP said that what they were doing was having a rant anyway with an implicit invitation to join in...

I do think the question "why are people so upset with Mr Gove?" a good one, so I think I will now ask it on a new thread.

Talkinpeace Wed 22-May-13 17:30:19

My mind is open to reforms that enhance front line services.

I think PIckles is an arse - BUT - he removed the ringfence from many grants which was undeniably a good thing that undid a stupid thing of Broons. PIckles has enforced increased transparency - in a bullying way admittedly - but again a good thing.

Gove's good thing was to unpick the grade inflation ski slope and to remove the BTec anomalies.
Gove's other good thing has been to force colleges and employers to relook at apprenticeships rather than just increasing University numbers.
Sadly Gove's BAD thing is that he - having talked about devolving power - cannot stop fiddling and interfering.
He's like a helicopter parent wanting to cut up the playdough because the kids are too young, rather than letting them learn.

warwick1 Wed 22-May-13 15:35:07

I think you are probably correct habba this is very much a political thread. Open minds not welcome it would seem.

Elibean Wed 22-May-13 10:23:16

Boffinmum grin

Copthallresident Tue 21-May-13 23:42:34

Well he evidently also has a low opinion of pupils, and by extension parents, so pupils, parents, teachers, that leaves a rather small constituency of support, since on the whole the 20-30s won't much care, and a fair few of the rest are grandparents, even my very right wing in laws who were "disgusted" at Thatcher's betrayal are "disgusted" with him.

TwasBrillig Tue 21-May-13 23:13:27

I think he has an incredibly low opinion of teachers, and a low understanding of what teaching is about. Sadly I don't think either are likely to change as he isn't able to listen.

BoffinMum Tue 21-May-13 23:10:32

I think we can safely say our public opinion is being properly challenged, don't you? wink

BoffinMum Tue 21-May-13 23:09:38

"No location is as undignified as being ‘in the centre’, somewhere the lowest common denominator and the highest public spending meet" ... an arid region where no principles can take root, no insitution can be sure of its foundation, no banner can be firmly placed. For that reason, it is a particularly shameless place for politicians to be ... The natural inhabitants of the centre are those politicians of easy virtue, prepared to massage public opinion but never challenge it"

Michael Gove, The Times, April 1999.

BoffinMum Tue 21-May-13 23:07:55

Read Tim Bale's great book 'The Conservative Party from Thatcher to Cameron' if you want to understand exactly what he is up to, and why.

Anyway, the reason he rushes in is that he is pretty new to politics, as they all are in the Cabinet, and he hasn't developed the ability to judge the electorate properly. They managed to get into power almost by default, but whether they will manage to stay in power is a completely different question.

Elibean Tue 21-May-13 22:40:30

Ditto that again.

And my main complaint is the same as mrz's - Gove rushes at it all like a bull at a gate. Which is not compatible with listening, considering, or thorough research.

Plus the rushing makes me suspicious of his motives, tbh. I think Boffinmum's last point is spot on.

TwasBrillig Tue 21-May-13 22:22:06

Yes - ditto that!

Feenie Tue 21-May-13 22:18:56

Excellent post, Boffinmum

TwasBrillig Tue 21-May-13 22:14:28

I'm uming and ahing about returning to teaching. I love teaching but this is all part of the reason I'm not hurrying back.

BoffinMum Tue 21-May-13 22:05:18

The reason teachers fret about Gove's reforms, is because they:

End up spending a lot of time worrying about new forms of paperwork and inspection that may have erratic and unpredictable outcomes, but which is likely to have very serious consequences both for them and the pupils they teach.

Worry about new kinds of tests and exams brought in very rapidly that they sense will not work very well, or which may well be very unfair for certain kinds of pupil.

Have to work with very precise instructions in how to teach certain things that they feel may not make any sense in terms of the particular pupils they have to work with.

Experience lack of access to the senior management teams because they are tied up in meetings linked to academicisation and restructuring, leading to less support in the day job than they really need.

Worry about their pay being cut in real terms because of new localised pay grading arrangements. This might be linked to worries about cronyism.

The reason Gove frets about teachers is because:

As he understands it, since the 1960s, teachers have been delivering a very child-centred curriculum at the expense of traditional knowledge-delivery methods of teaching, which he thinks is more important.

He also considers educational standards in the UK to be lower than they should be in terms of international comparisons, and holds teachers directly accountable for this.

Teachers are pretty expensive since their salaries went up in the 2000s, and there are a lot of them, so getting them working for less gives the Government a good opportunity to save a chunk of the public sector budget.

He is a former Thatcherite turned Tory moderniser, and he thinks that if he manages to look like a strong, determined, Far Right politician who has resolved the above problems, he considers that this will pave the way for him to become Leader of the Party, aka Prime Minister.

mrz Tue 21-May-13 20:22:38

No you seemed to have missed out the listening stage ... and since you claim you have no opinion you clearly didn't wait.

My main issue with Gove is his habit of rushing into things ... curriculum review, done on the gallop ... consultations sent to schools during the school holidays ... ignoring the very people he asked to advise when they don't say what he wants to hear ...

Academies based on a failing system www.nytimes.com/2013/02/02/opinion/more-lessons-about-charter-schools.html?_r=0 www.guardian.co.uk/education/2011/nov/28/us-charter-academies-free-schools
wasting money buying in an inappropriate curriculum www.guardian.co.uk/education/2013/may/18/academy-pays-for-us-curriculum

Talkinpeace Tue 21-May-13 20:14:57

Habbadabba
Gove did not force schools to become academies to
give HT's the freedom they desire
he did it to break LEAs to which he is ideologically opposed - even the good and effective ones.

If heads were really being given freedom - why is Academy conversion being forced on heads and GBs who are happy in the LEA?

And of course Academies will be expected to magically stay "outstanding" and if they do not, then the school will be handed to a sponsor and the Head and GB replaced.
No pressure then

and these sponsors do not have to publish school by school accounts so are a very non transparent approach

Gove got booed at the Heads conference.
Half of all secondaries in England are Academies - do the math (as they say where I'm from)

HabbaDabba Tue 21-May-13 20:14:47

No need to post a response ladies since I'm going to hide this thread.

I was hoping to understand more about Gove and why his policies are so unpopular with teachers but I seem to have stumbled into a bitchfest where I am supposed to stay quiet and listen to all the one sided bitching and then draw the 'logical' conclusion that Gove is a twat.

If you ladies think that Gove is twat then that probably means that he is the good guy grin

HabbaDabba Tue 21-May-13 20:07:28

mrz - I thought that was what I was doing? confused

People complain that Gove interferred too much. Academies are supposed to, in theory, give HT's the freedom they desire. Yet people are still complaining. I am trying to understand why.

Gove seems to be fucked if he does and fucked if he doesn't where you people are concerned. I know the feeling.

I mean, I ask questions so that I can form an informed opinion but I get grief for involving myself in the thread because I don't have an opinion. Then I get grief because I should read and listen before contributing. But unless I ask questions, how do I learn about your viewpoint?

And you are suppose to be teachers???

BoneyBackJefferson Tue 21-May-13 19:45:06

For years teachers have been told that they must tell pupils what their levels are, what their grades are, how to achieve the next levels.

For those that do not know gove is not allowing exam boards to tell teachers what the grade boundaries are, how can I as a teacher do my job, a job that gove tells me to do and sets the parameters, if he isn't going to tell what the parameters are?

As for the academies, gove and ofsted will have a field day as they are not telling schools what percentage A*-C they have to reach before they call them incompetent and force us to become an academy.

mrz Tue 21-May-13 19:31:26

Most people who want to consider the argument listen (read) and contribute when they have reached a conclusion.

HabbaDabba Tue 21-May-13 19:29:05

Why am I on this thread if I have no opinion? Ermm because I like to hear people's argument before I form an opinion?

You obviously want to be left alone to have a Gove bitchfest rather then explain to me your logical arguments so I'll leave you to it.

Feenie Tue 21-May-13 19:11:34

Agree - what's the point? confused

mrz Tue 21-May-13 18:51:19

having freedom of speech is pretty useless if you have nothing to say hmm

warwick1 Tue 21-May-13 18:45:39

Because EvilTwins its called 'freedom of speech'.

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