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We’ve been wanting parents to be pissed off about the state of education for years

(30 Posts)
noblegiraffe Wed 17-Jun-20 12:44:13

Having spent years on here trying to tell parents that education is in a complete mess, that there’s a critical shortage of teachers, that there’s no funding, that the DfE are a bunch of useless tossers there has always been the question ‘why are parents not up in arms about this?’

And we’ve thought that parents just don’t know what’s going on: That their kid is taught by a series of unsuitable or unqualified supply teachers. That we don’t have the resources to do our job. That the exam system is a nightmare. That a large minority of kids are disengaged. That a decentralised academy system and no national curriculum means that everyone is doing something different, that teachers are wasting huge amounts of time reinventing the wheel, that textbooks aren’t allowed. That many kids with SEN are being failed in mainstream where they cannot access the work and do not get the support they need.

We know this. We know that we, personally, have been doing our best in a shitty system, trying to fill gaps and making up for it by working harder and harder.

Schools have been covering up the true extent of the issues to parents because we need bums on seats.

Well now they can see them can’t they?

It is entirely possible that a kid who was taught by a string of supply teachers when in school isn’t getting an optimal education experience when at home.

It’s possible that a large number of kids aren’t engaging with home-learning. We know the efforts that are gone to to get them to even bring a pen to school - now it’s a headline.

We know that the DfE are a bunch of liars who have systematically lost swathes of teachers through poor policy decisions. Now parents can see just what a bunch of farts in a jar they are for themselves with the absolute bodge job they have made of the return to school.

We know that the Tories don’t give a shit about disadvantaged kids. Now they know too, thanks to being publicly shamed by Marcus Rashford.

Why are we defending it? We know there are systemic problems.

Why not say ‘Yes, there are kids out there who aren’t receiving a good enough education’ and point the blame in the right direction. Not the individual teacher. Not even the school. But the systematic underfunding and destruction of our education system over the past 10 years. Can they honestly look at how education has been managed over the lockdown and say that the government is doing a good job? And then ask whether they think that this complete incompetence is a recent development. Why are some schools doing X and others not? Because there are massive inequalities in provision in the system AT ALL TIMES, it’s only now you can see it.

And then say ‘now you know just how bad things are, what are you going to do about it?’.

OP’s posts: |
cakeandcustard Wed 17-Jun-20 13:20:25

Hear hear

songbirdsings Wed 17-Jun-20 13:40:21

Totally agree. It's a shame some of these threads that do blame government are automatically assumed to be teacher bashing (I know many are of course). We all need to shout louder about the total mess government has made of education in recent years and even bigger mess it's making now with a lack of strategy.

Appuskidu Wed 17-Jun-20 16:12:14


Good to see you again @noblegiraffeflowers

monkeytennis97 Wed 17-Jun-20 16:55:36

Hear hear

ginforall Wed 17-Jun-20 17:23:35

Me and my husband had this exact same conversation just the other day. Of course there is going to be a massive gap in the amount of work done and progress made at this time - there always is when kids are at school so this isn't going to change when they are at home.

Same with the difference between private and state. Yes private might be getting more at the minute - but they have more resources usually. That's why people pay for it isn't it?

Beawillalwaysbetopdog Wed 17-Jun-20 17:30:42

Welcome back Nobel, we've missed you smile

And as usual, totally agree smile

cheesecurdsandgravy Wed 17-Jun-20 17:31:31

Absolutely agree.

Welcome back @noblegiraffe, your well balanced voice of reason was very much missed. flowers

ohthegoats Wed 17-Jun-20 18:34:36

Yes, in addition to that it shows how much schools rely on the goodwill of staff to do things that haven't really been asked of them, just because 'it's the right thing to do'.

likeafishneedsabike Wed 17-Jun-20 19:09:17

Welcome back @noblegiraffe.
Couldn’t agree more. I Am particularly confused about parents being surprised that private schools are providing ‘better ‘ provision (not sure it’s better really but the teachers are more visible). State school parents have been moaning that it’s unfair. Errrr yes, of course it’s unfair - that’s the system. Why would anyone think otherwise? confused

Sureitwillbegrand Wed 17-Jun-20 19:52:58

Completely agree.

Welcome back noble

Hugepeppapigfan Wed 17-Jun-20 23:42:46


Malbecfan Thu 18-Jun-20 15:41:30

I agree with everything you have said.

reallyneedmoresleep Thu 18-Jun-20 17:35:48

Can we have NobleGiraffe as prime minister please?

starrynight19 Thu 18-Jun-20 19:16:16

I just wish people could see the bigger picture here.
Rather than turning on teachers and schools we would be a greater voice together.
Wouldn’t that be wonderful if we could make something positive for children’s education in the future come out of this (if only)

TheHoneyBadger Thu 18-Jun-20 20:07:51

I keep trying to steer threads this way. Parents seem to be blaming individual schools and teachers.

I keep pointing out yes lots is shit and it will take both parents and teachers together saying this is not good enough to government to make schools effective.

Often we reach a point of agreement but then in come some fuckers who either haven’t rtft or pretend not to have.

Hopefully I get at least one person to snap out of the divide and rule scam each time but it does feel like pushing a rock uphill.

I wonder if mn would let us run a pressure campaign of parents and teachers demanding meaningful change to education?

TheHoneyBadger Thu 18-Jun-20 20:18:47

Ive sent this report to mnhq Hi. Could mnhq have a look at my post that I’ve reported and the whole thread. If I drafted something would you look at it? It would be so good if all the parental angst and teacher/parent ‘discussions’ could be channeled into something positive. It’s going to take teachers and parents (and I’m both as are many on this site) standing together to effect meaningful change in our education system. It would be good to have mumsnet as the springboard for that

NeurotrashWarrior Fri 19-Jun-20 07:33:21

Fully agree. I've been feeling like the moany outlier at school watching the state of things over the last few years.

I hadn't recognised how big UK class sizes are till this too.

So much we just accept.

TheHoneyBadger Fri 19-Jun-20 11:40:27

I’ve been working with teachers who don’t even seem to understand directed time hence feeling totally entitled to tell me to write schemes of work in summer term even though I’m part time and didn’t have gain back time as no exam groups. They didn’t seem to understand that gain back is the reason teachers can be given extra work in summer term.

Totally bizarre how unaware and not giving a shit about our terms and conditions later generations of teachers are.

On questioning it they patronisingly told me teaching isn’t a 9-5 job you know. Of course I bloody know. I’m part time but working full time hours ffs

TheHoneyBadger Fri 19-Jun-20 11:45:20

Good HOD status is awarded to those who build databases that record everything requiring massive marking and assessment loads from classroom teachers and data input and palm off all curriculum development and observations and nqt and student teacher support to mps teachers.

Sorry to those of you who are hod and are not like this.

BertNErnie Fri 19-Jun-20 16:52:14


I think parents have never had to really be concerned about education as the system has always worked in terms of us getting on with things even when it's dire.

I think lockdown and the absence of school and the security schools brings has made people realise how essential the teaching profession is to society. I also think having to home school has made some parents and carers realise how difficult it actually is. I have also had parents who I have spoken to over and over again about concerns with a child's attainment and offered additional support contact me and apologise as now they see what we saw and raised months ago. I have also had a few ECHP queries too which I thought was quite interesting.

TheHoneyBadger Fri 19-Jun-20 18:45:11

Even with my own child Bert I'm horrified at how much he seems to expect to be spoonfed. He cannot/will not do the work unless I sit with him and even then have to chivvy him along to actually do it properly. That's one on one with your mum who happens to be a teacher. He's not low ability but I can't see that his his literacy or learning skills have come on at all since primary. He's had subject specific knowledge shoved in his head but he's actually a worse independent learner than when I was home schooling him 5 years ago.

He hasn't had a maths teacher who had english as a first language or was trained in uk since primary school (he's 13). His form group are off the wall levels of EBD issues meaning even if you had a decent teacher they'd be hard pressed to get an atmosphere fit for learning up and running in a lesson.

Our year heads have been replaced with 15k a year non teachers.

Our head teacher walked out mid term after shutting himself in his office shredding for a week.

It's a village school somehow still managing to hold onto a 'naice' reputation despite massive change in catchment and demographic and a complete failure to cope with that.

Classrooms are falling apart literally in some parts of the school and buckets are strategically placed for rainy days.

Parents don't want to know, slt don't want parents to know or they'll get even more difficult cohorts of children as even more of the local parents clamour to get their kids into the boys school or the religious school despite them being a nightmare to get to from here.

We need some honest expose stuff of what a state schools are in.

Unless I'm just at the rare falling apart at the seams schools?

TheHoneyBadger Fri 19-Jun-20 18:49:52

Oh and an academy that runs very highly respected single sex schools in the area has secured planning permission to build a new coed school at the other end of the village.

Once that opens they'll be beyond undersubscribed and tbf I'll be at the new school in a shot if they'll have me and so will many of my colleagues.

I'm posting all that because I'd like to understand if I am in a one off shitty situation or if others are seeing a fast acceleration into the ground of standards? For context I started teaching in 2002 and it seemed like it was just turning towards decline then but has picked up speed with recent years feeling like surely we're going to hit the ground shortly.

noblegiraffe Sat 20-Jun-20 11:50:17

We need some honest expose stuff of what a state schools are in.

Maybe teachers need to be less defensive when it comes up?

Did you get a response from MNHQ? It was telling that when I posted this thread in AIBU it got barely any responses, even though it had ‘zoom lessons’ in the title. I’m not sure parents want to hear that their kids are in a broken system and would rather blame individual teachers?

OP’s posts: |
Hugepeppapigfan Sat 20-Jun-20 12:56:42

It is a hugely broken system.

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