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Who gets a say when changes are made to the educational system?

(29 Posts)
Bloodyfriendshipgroups Sun 26-Oct-14 17:41:03

I was reading some commentary about GCSE muusic which is changing its syllabus. The commentator essentially said that the people who get to make the changes don't listen to the people who know what changes ought to be made.

I know there are consultations, but who gets to influence the terms of reference for these? How does the process work?

ReallyTired Sun 26-Oct-14 21:39:40

The present education secretary attended a private girls school, went to Oxford and has little idea of how the other half lives. Infact having an education secretary who has no direct experience of state schools seems pretty common.

Ofcourse everyone who has ever been to school has opinon on education and knows more than the teachers.

I wish we followed Ben Goldacre's suggestion and had evidence based educational policy with teachers doing the research. All Ben wants to do is teach the teachers how to do statistics and how to do high quality research. I feel that educational standards would rise dramatically if evidence based practice was adopted.

www.badscience.net/2013/03/heres-my-paper-on-evidence-and-teaching-for-the-education-minister/

Coolas Mon 27-Oct-14 01:00:49

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Bloodyfriendshipgroups Mon 27-Oct-14 10:53:53

That's interesting. Do specialist teachers's organisations get a say?

AsBrightAsAJewel Mon 27-Oct-14 15:16:52

"Do specialist teachers's organisations get a say?" - HaHaHa! Like the New 2014 Primary Curriculum - they might get their say during the "consultation", but they don't listen to them.

mummytime Mon 27-Oct-14 20:34:06

No body really gets listened to - even the Universities (even Oxbridge) or employers.
Just look at the out cry over the getting rid of A'levels.

Occasionally they listen when exam boards say they just can't change that quickly. But there was the year an Education secretary decided there would be no calculators used in SATs, so kids of 11 had to sit a paper which had been designed to be done with a calculator - but without being able to use one. (The difference between 19x20 and 19.2 x20.7)

mrz Tue 28-Oct-14 08:27:36

The government consulted on the new curriculum then ignored the responses. Like many educational changes they are quietly published while schools are on holiday ... A cynic might think they don't want teachers to contribute.

TheFallenMadonna Tue 28-Oct-14 08:35:16

I read one consultation response, and the government said that the changes were "broadly welcomed", when even the most cursory glance at the numbers showed that was untrue. However, what really stood out was the paucity of the numbers responding.

ACheesePuff Tue 28-Oct-14 08:35:49

I hate the way education policy is at the mercy of latest education secretary. Being a politician doesn't qualify you as an expert in the way kids learn. I so wish we could take the politics out of eduction ad follow proven methods decided upon by educational psychologists alone. We could appoint a director of eduction,like the bank of England has, to oversee the whole thing, who doesn't change with the government.

AuntieStella Tue 28-Oct-14 08:49:18

Anyone else remember Curriculum 2000 and the oodles of reforms New Labour directed to be made to the curriculum?

Don't fall into the mistake of thinking this is a Tory issue.

mrz Tue 28-Oct-14 09:05:18

Interested to know what changes nu labour actually made? They abandoned their new national curriculum (after publication) at the eleventh hour having spent huge amounts of money on research and development including sending copies to all schools!

Coolas Tue 28-Oct-14 09:08:04

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Coolas Tue 28-Oct-14 09:08:33

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

AuntieStella Tue 28-Oct-14 09:14:04

Short article originally published by NUT in 2009 on Labour's curriculm changes and why much of the thinking was muddled.

mrz Tue 28-Oct-14 10:30:23

www.sounds-write.co.uk/apps.aspx

mrz Tue 28-Oct-14 10:31:21

sticerd.lse.ac.uk/dps/case/spcc/wp03.pdf. Sorry

Bloodyfriendshipgroups Tue 28-Oct-14 13:16:49

So is it a bit like the Railways: just keeps changing till everyone is dizzy?

MissMillament Tue 28-Oct-14 14:05:22

I know one very experienced educationalist who has done a lot of well-respected research in the field of literacy. This person was one of a number of similarly-qualified experts. 'consulted' when the new primary curriculum was being designed. All of their recommendations were completely ignored.
As for us bog-standard teachers nobody ever asks us anything. What would we know?

AmberTheCat Tue 28-Oct-14 17:56:40

Anyone can respond to a consultation, whether as an individual or as part of an institution. Whether anyone takes any notice is, of course, another matter... But the more people who respond with a similar view, the harder it is to ignore that view, so I think it's important that people who are knowledgable about the issue being consulted on do respond, rather than just assuming it won't make any difference.

mrz Tue 28-Oct-14 18:25:52

I've responded to all the EYFS and Primary consultations (quite straightforward to complete on line) as a teacher and a parent. They are usually open to all interested parties but not widely advertised and as I said earlier they often appear during the summer break when schools and teachers aren't around.

Bloodyfriendshipgroups Tue 28-Oct-14 21:02:41

I responded to one once (in my professional field)and got an email asking me to call them!
Which I did but it was a very technical area with international treaties that I hadn't mugged up on enough,

Coolas Fri 31-Oct-14 10:07:51

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Poisonwoodlife Fri 31-Oct-14 10:35:17

I responded on the proposed changes to the History curriculum as an academic and as a parent. I think under the storm of protest even from their supporters the political supertanker may have shifted a degree or so but they still didn't really get it.

They are playing only to a narrow constituency of Middle England voters who look back at some halcyon time that never really existed because they are looking through rose coloured specs, hence the need to base our strategy for teaching History on a political agenda and an Edwardian book of bedtime stories, rather than the advice of Historians, History teachers, parents, undoing all the good that has been done developing History as an enlightening, challenging and inspiring subject in schools.

I couldn't agree more that education should not be in the hands of politicians, and come to that, neither should trade and industry, another area where I see political meddling without listening to expert advice leading to damage.

Abuelita Fri 31-Oct-14 11:41:21

The Gov't plays lip service to consultations and any dissenting opinion. For example:

1 The academics who complained that the new national curriculum was 'too much, too soon' were all dismissed as 'Marxists'.

2 Protests over the history curriculum were ignored. Rumour has it Gove wrote it himself (can't confirm that).

3 Gove bypassed the experts he had brought in to advise on the new national curriculum. Three of the four resigned in protest.

4 Parents concerned about the forcible takeover of the London school, Downhills, were dismissed as 'enemies of promise'.

5 Gove ignored the Education Select Committee's concerns about the introduction of the EBacc measure.

6 Gove ignored calls from organisations including the CBI, Lord Baker, a spokesperson from the Girls' Day Schools Trust and a ex-senior DfE official to completely overhaul the exam system and move towards graduation at 18. Instead, Gove rushed through 'reforms' to GCSE, AS and A level which have not been trialed or evaluated.

mrz Fri 31-Oct-14 11:56:59

https://www.gov.uk/government/consultations/performance-descriptors-key-stages-1-and-2

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