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We need to rise up about the lack of education for our children

(649 Posts)
Speeding201700 Sun 07-Jun-20 09:54:01

Please do this. Please join the Twitter movement #usforthem
Please write to your MPs
Please talk about this.

Our children are missing out on their fundamental human right of an education.

The children of regular families are suffering (all 5 of mine are suffering desperately), but those in vulnerable families are suffering even further. The gap between these children will be HUGE

I am a teacher and a mother. I am ready to go back to work full time and with the 'old normal'. I am also type 1 diabetic.

Please help us rise up to get our children educated. Our children have been totally forgotten about. Throughout my career I've had it rammed down my throat about how school is a safe place for so many children. They don't care about these children now.

I am amazed so many people have just accepted this. It has gone on for too long now.

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Waxonwaxoff0 Sun 07-Jun-20 13:02:40

I agree.

StSaulOfSnacks Sun 07-Jun-20 13:04:32


Fluffyglitterystuff Sun 07-Jun-20 13:15:03

I agree.

I'd like to know what the long term plan might be.

Maybe the government need to be throwing money at it, extra buildings, extra teachers.

We have a health emergency but now we are going to have an education emergency.

Unless they are also hoping for a miracle in the magic month of September.

Namenic Sun 07-Jun-20 13:24:52

I think it would be good to invest in the online Oak academy platform because of shielding children and in case we get another pandemic sometime.

Also giving access to kids without appropriate tech, SEN, vulnerable - eg loaning equipment, libraries, school places.

Back to normal quickly seems a big risk - 2nd wave, further lockdown.

thewinkingprawn Sun 07-Jun-20 13:25:36

Totally agree.

Weepinggreenwillow Sun 07-Jun-20 13:31:32

absolutely OP. I have joined the twitter movement and have also emailed Education secretary and my MP as below (also see my other thread on this)

Dear Mr Williamson,

In these difficult and challenging times I feel I need to contact you, in your capacity as Secretary of State for education, to request your help to address a matter of some urgency. I would like to know what the Government is planning to do regarding the current breach of Protocol 1, Article 2 of the Human Rights act which states that “No person shall be denied the right to an education.”

As an example I have 4 school aged children aged 12, 14, 15 and 18. None of them have received an education since March 17th this year. They have had some work set on line to be completed at home but I can assure that this does not in any way constitute an education. I am a doctor working full time in the NHS. My husband is a secondary school teacher.I fully appreciate all the many implications of this pandemic. I understand the reasons for school closures thus far. However this situation is simply unsustainable at this point. I am increasingly concerned that there seems to be no clear plan in place for a return to education for September. Part time schooling mixed with at home learning is being suggested by many schools. This will not provide my children with an education as both my husband and I will be working out of the home and will not be able to support the children with at home learning. I have been told if I instead chose to utilize the key worker children’s provision my children would need to remain in this “bubble” and would not be able to join their year groups on any day they were in school. The key worker bubble will not be being taught proper lessons unlike the year groups and so my children would be massively disadvantaged as well as missing out on being able to mix with their friends. Given that I have been working flat out in the NHS all through this, I find it incredibly unfair that my children may end up being penalised because of this.

Children all across the country are suffering massively. The many, many vulnerable children and those living in poverty are being placed at great risk of permanent harm. The impacts of this on young people’s mental health will be felt for many years to come.

A child’s right to an education is a basic human right. I understand why this has been temporarily suspended in these unprecedented circumstances but this can not be allowed to continue. I would remind you of the concept of Proportionality which applies when a basic convention is interfered with : this states that “Interference with a Convention Right must not be excessive, arbitrary or unfair, or have too severe an impact on a particular group or individual.” I would argue that interference with this particular human right is having a most severe impact on the group of the nation’s children and I would also argue that currently the interference seems to be both unfair and arbitrary.

I am not unaware of the many challenges of returning children to school safely in September, but I am greatly dismayed by the apparent lack of planning and problem solving that seems to be happening by the government. It was all perfectly possible to build extra hospitals (still unused) and to bring back retired NHS staff, but no such measures, or any other creative problem solving strategies, are being talked about to secure our children's futures it seems. Schools are confused, angered and frustrated at lack of discussion and planning from the Government. It would certainly seem as if the nation’s children and young people are a very low priority for the Government.

So please can you tell me, without further delay, how the Government plans to respond to this ongoing breach of a child’s basic human right to an education.

Yours Sincerely

FulfilledRemit Sun 07-Jun-20 13:37:12

I agree. Yesterday there were 21 new cases in the whole of Scotland yet even in August, 2 months away, they won't be going back as usual. How low do cases have to be? If we're waiting for treatment/a vaccine, what if there never is one?

Duckfinger Sun 07-Jun-20 13:37:56

I'm with you OP.
I am a TA all my colleagues feel the same, the kids need to be back and back to the old normal.
Maybe we shouldn't have a assemblies, maybe we should stagger drop off/ pick up for distancing adults. Optional attendance for medicallly vulnerable but other than that business as usual as quickly as possible please. Monday morning if you want.
Other than that business as usual

ChippityDoDa Sun 07-Jun-20 13:43:10

Yes!!! Finally! I have been saying this for weeks. As much as I’m in favour of the current rhetoric on racial equality (although not protesting during a pandemic...)why the hell aren’t we all protesting about the scandal in education that is presenting itself?

DrMadelineMaxwell Sun 07-Jun-20 13:44:13

As a teacher, I agree.

In England, ask how they are going to increase provision to allow the rest of the children back in bubbles of 15. This cannot be demanded of the school with a fixed number of classrooms and staff. If the government want smaller classes in the interim (and they would be fabulous for the pupil's learning if full time) then they need to find premises and fund teachers for the period that schools need to operate like this.

In Wales, where they are having to stick to the 2m distance currently and only aiming for 1/3 pupils maximum in at any one time, they also need to be asked where the funding is for premises and staff to make sure that pupils are in more than once or twice a fortnight.

As a teacher, I would find it infinitely easier to teach full time for a smaller group. Prep and delivery time doesn't change with the number of the pupils and they'd benefit from more teacher time due to the lower ratios.
As a parent, I'd like to see my child in more. Getting more education. I don't care if it's exactly the same teachers or school but they need it.

September is an ideal time for pupils to get used to new teachers even if they aren't currently staff in their current school and could have however long it was needed (up to a year to ride the potential resurgance of the virus in the Autumn 20 and Srping 21 terms) before then being integrated back into school in larger numbers.

It's the government stating sizes, yet it's the schools being asked to provide the impossible.

Carycy Sun 07-Jun-20 13:44:44

Totally agree. It’s a disgrace what we are doing to our children.

Speeding201700 Sun 07-Jun-20 13:48:17

I'm so glad there are more of us. We all really do need to make a loud noise about this. I have written to anyone that might listen now.

We need the OLD normal, not the new normal.. Schools have managed to stay open during wars, during the 1968 pandemic that killed up to 5 million people, during the 2017 flu pandemic. This is entirely political. Schools have always remained open as they are known to be hugely important to a child's welfare.

I simply cannot believe that in 2020 I am having to beg to get my children to go to school, and beg to go back to work as a teacher in a normal environment. Considering we have always had it rammed down our throat that if our child missed 1 day of school then they'll fail at life, I find it unbelievable.

I agree about investing in The oak academy for shielding children and families. But this does not represent the risk to most children. Most children need to be at school

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LaceCurtains Sun 07-Jun-20 13:48:48

I think it's about much more than education, actually. I've worked in school right through and as "we" knew schools do so much more than educate.

It's the "other" stuff that society as a while is missing most, although if course individuals will also be severely disadvantaged through lack of education too.

That said, it wouldn't matter if we were fully open, there's a huge number of children who still won't be sent, so lots of families obviously don't think they need us as much as we do grin

My personal view is we just need to get on with it. This limbo is doing no one any good.

Namenic Sun 07-Jun-20 13:50:10

Localised lifting of restrictions seems sensible - ie if people were not allowed to travel out of their region and there was good track and trace, I think there would be more scope for things to get back to normal in places with low infections.

Deelish75 Sun 07-Jun-20 13:51:21

Agree, the government need to start talking to us as what the long term plan is.

Also agree with PP who said about an education emergency - we are walking into one.

SpeedofaSloth Sun 07-Jun-20 13:52:09

I agree OP.

Speeding201700 Sun 07-Jun-20 13:52:42

I agree about the protests. I would honestly be at the front of a march or s protest and I really do hope one is organised..

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Pertella Sun 07-Jun-20 13:52:58

Yep. I understand why schools had to close but now proper plans need to be put in place to get children back into school.

TheOnlyLivingBoyInNewCross Sun 07-Jun-20 13:53:00

I have long been incredibly frustrated with the way in which the virus is still dominating everything in such a panic-stricken way. Every time there are references to easing lockdown, re-opening shops, returning to school, etc, there is such a cacophony of protests about the second wave and the R figures and the daily stats. There is a sustained lack of understanding that the lockdown is not about eradicating the virus. There's almost a sense of relish when the naysayers predict the second wave, as if it would be a dream come true for them.

What frightens me most is the "headless chicken" approach that the government seems to be taking, just doing whatever their Magic 8 ball suggested at any particular moment in time. There's no sense of cohesion or forward planning or of confidence in what they say.

FiveFootTwoEyesOfBlue Sun 07-Jun-20 13:53:44

I'm with you OP. Look at the data from other countries where schools have reopened. Yes we need some sensible measures to minimise the risk. But the local authority education departments, and unions, are not experts on epidemiology and behavioural science. School headteachers are deciding when or whether to allow students back based on their own 'risk assessments' - what scientific knowledge are these based on?

I also don't think the government realise how widely varied the 'home learning' provision is, between schools. Why have the news media not been on this already? My child's school have said to my Y10, don't worry about missing out, because everyone's in the same situation. But THEY'RE NOT. Not around the country when it comes to next year's GCSE results.

User1123788363 Sun 07-Jun-20 13:53:46

I agree

Speeding201700 Sun 07-Jun-20 13:54:43

Absolutely, we really do need to just get on with it! I am type 1 diabetic, so in a vulnerable group, before anyone says I would feel differently if I was vulnerable. I am more vulnerable to any virus or infection but I can't hide away from that risk.

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Speeding201700 Sun 07-Jun-20 13:57:07

Absolutely. This is political.

Everything that happens in the UK is a massive shit-show.

Yep, I totally agree.

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Groundhogdayzz Sun 07-Jun-20 13:57:09

Agreed. We are not only impacting their education, but potentially a health crisis caused by lack of exercise. Habits formed as children tend to stay with you into adult hood-lack of sports, no PE sessions and team training will have a massive impact in my opinion. I really hope when schools return more time and money will go into healthy eating/exercise programs alongside the standard subjects.

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