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Anyone else watching Educating Essex?

(56 Posts)
Greensleeves Sat 01-Oct-11 10:01:38

I am addicted to it! Partly because I am in week 3 of a PGCE and am school-obsessed, but it really is compulsive viewing

Does anyone know anything about the school it's set in? Is it a fairly well-t-do area? Does anyone have personal knowledge it? I find Mr Drew fascinating!

lec0rnsillk Sat 01-Oct-11 10:02:06

watchedit last week - was great

CointreauVersial Sat 01-Oct-11 10:05:38

I don't know the school, but I rushed to the PC after the first episode to google the Ofsted report (and I'm sure I wasn't the only one!). Outstanding, apparently. Mr Drew is fab, shame the Daily Mail didn't think so (usual DM reactionary crap).

I too am addicted, mainly because DS1 has just started secondary. He caught some of the first episode and absolutely goggled at some of the bad behaviour. He asked if it was a "special" school for badly behaved kids. I guess he hasn't experienced Y10 yet!

Esian Sat 01-Oct-11 10:05:39

I watched it too. I imagine it's quite a good school or else they wouldn't have allowed the cameras in!
I was quite shock at what those girls did with the text messages.

Greensleeves Sat 01-Oct-11 10:06:32

ooh, what did the daily mail say about him?

twinklytroll Sat 01-Oct-11 10:07:04

I have watched it and would warn you against assuming that all state schools are like this. It could not be more different from the school in which I teach.

Greensleeves Sat 01-Oct-11 10:17:34

I do realise that twinklytroll, hence my asking whether it was in a well-to-do area

twinklytroll Sat 01-Oct-11 10:21:19

I am not watching it thinking it is a good school, it seems out of control to me.

Greensleeves Sat 01-Oct-11 10:25:33

Oh, I thought you meant "not all schools are as tame as that"

I don't think it seems out of control. I am impressed by the staff and the positivity and creativity of their approach.

hocuspontas Sat 01-Oct-11 10:38:16

Passmores school in Harlow is the school. As an area this is one of the best schools results-wise with nearly 50% A - C inc. English and Maths. It has the highest % of SN of the area as well at 17%. I think the staff do a good job and manage to keep their sanity and humour in some very trying circumstances.
And not all secondary schools are like this!

hocuspontas Sat 01-Oct-11 10:40:12

Link didn't work! Go to Essex and scroll down to school. In answer to your question - no, it is not a well to do area.

bruffin Sat 01-Oct-11 10:52:09

I think you all have to remember this programme is focusing on the worst behaviour, not the "normal" children.

I work in Harlow and have friends whose children who go to the school. My friend is very happy with the school and her children have thrived there. One was in yr 11 so knows the children featured. Mr Drew and the HM are very well respected by the parents. From what my friend says it has a very happy positive ethos, but strict as well.
Harlow is not a wealthy area and the I suspect has more than it's fare share of dysfunctional families.
My DD also knows Sam who was featured last week from a rock school she did, she liked him a lot and i have heard a bit of his back story and it is sad.

The older girl that was mobile bullying is apparently normally a very quiet well behaved girl and this was completely out of character

The school has actually moved to a lovely shiney new building this term, the parents are now worried that Mr Drew will be headhunted

CointreauVersial Sat 01-Oct-11 11:03:08

The Daily Mail (of course) took stuff out of context, and focussed on things like Mr Drew and the Headteacher larking about (but they were actually in private at the time) and one of the teachers calling the pupils "scumbags" (but it was said in an affectionate manner which, to me, demonstrated the rapport he had with them).

The problem is, people like my stepmum read the DM, but don't actually watch the programme, and start spouting rubbish about the state of our education system blah blah blah....

twinklytroll Sat 01-Oct-11 11:20:39

I rarely agree with a Daily Mail article but I do with much of this one

I think the swearing, especially by the senior staff, shows a worrying lack of judgement. They are not in private because they are on camera and their pupils will watch.

I am glad they are moving into a new building because the environment in which they are working is depressing.

I cannot ever imagine that I would ever call a pupil a scumbag.

It does not seem a strict school at all to me, I would certainly want to work in a much more disciplined environment and would want the same for my children. The uniform and make up for example are shocking. Most schools have issues with uniform etc but the kids would sort it out before speaking to a senior teacher - but they do not seem to care.

In one scene a teacher was talking and the kids were clearly not listening - but he carried on - which suggests he is used to being ignored.

bruffin Sat 01-Oct-11 11:43:49

But twinky you are watching only a glimpse.. It is strict- Sam was eventually excluded permantly for swearing at a teacher.
I do agree a bit about the uniform, but I suspect they pick their fights. DC's school is a lot stricter on things like ties, and dd was shocked to see the girl in neon leggings.
My other friend has a dd at one of the very strict academic schools in Harlow and she most likely send her ds to Passmores rather than there, because it does seem to care about the pupils themselves
A friend of mine works in a school in enfield and she says the way the children walk around the corridors between is very indicative of the behaviour in the school. Her school there was a free for all, it was noticeable at Passmores how calm and orderly they were. I think you need to look at the children in the background. I thnk the class you were talking about was the one with Sam in, which is basically the children with problems.

My friend does have some reservations about her dcs seeing the teachers mucking about, but it will show the children that they are real human beings.

twinklytroll Sat 01-Oct-11 11:46:23

I accept that I am only watching a glimpse, I have to remind myself as I watch the programme as it makes me very irritated.

You can be strict and care about the students, I work in a strict school and care about the students, infact I am strict because I care.

lec0rnsillk Sat 01-Oct-11 11:59:07

I watched the episode that the DM are wailing about - to me it showed strong teachers who understood their pupil's strengths and weaknesses and who were willing to make the extra effort necessary to accommodate children with difficulties. I was really impressed by Mr Drew's views on permanent exclusion.

hocuspontas Sat 01-Oct-11 13:07:45

I really think some schools should scrap uniforms from KS4. If you are fighting a losing battle with girls' skirt lengths and make-up, jewellery etc you energies are better spent building relationships instead of being at loggerheads all the time.

hocuspontas Sat 01-Oct-11 13:09:38

you energies = your energy!

lec0rnsillk Sat 01-Oct-11 14:19:51

agree hocus - I think schools should scrap uniforms altogether

IloveJudgeJudy Sat 01-Oct-11 15:33:34

I'm interested in what kind of school you work in, twinkly. Is it a selective or single-sex school? My DC go to a comp in the Southeast and I was not particularly surprised at the behaviour. I think the pupils walked pretty calmly between lessons and the lessons we were shown most of were the bottom sets where a lot of the pupils have AEN.

AmberLeaf Sat 01-Oct-11 15:49:48

I really liked Sam.

Love Mr Drew too, he reminds me of a teacher I had.

twinklytroll Sun 02-Oct-11 10:32:40

I teach in a state comprehensive.

twinklytroll Sun 02-Oct-11 10:35:47

I have taught in very rough schools which felt out of control, constant accusations from pupils, uniform barely worn, girls dressed as if they were auditioning for the X factor and learning was almost a by product to the social care that became our focus, Educating Essex reminded me of those schools.

Of course I need to keep reminding myself that they will be purposely filming the difficult classes, I have a difficult class who can misbehave given the chance.

Flamingredhead Sun 02-Oct-11 10:43:14

Harlow is not a well to do area at all predominantly HA/Council low cost homes but with some more expensive pockets .Old Harlow /church Langley areas .Honest Truth would I want to live in Harlow no and ds1 and ds2 were glad to leave . But out of the schools passmore does achieve the best results by quite a large margin .So they are doing something right .

Would I have wanted ds2 there no .he did not like the school but forty story for him were other side of the boarder just so he goes in Hertfordshire mind so do a reasonable amount from Harlow as well

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