What is education?

Via Wikipedia

Well mate, uh? It’s like kinda like wot yous learn, innit?

Is probably the sort of answer you would be most likely to receive, if you posed that question to one of today’s spotty pubescent school kids. It was therefore a refreshing change to read in an addition of this weeks regional rag…

Why can’t we face the truth?For how much longer are we going to permit our children’s schooling to be ruined by the hidebound ideology of bureaucrats in local educational authorities, in Ofsted and the teaching unions? (Peter Mullen* Northern Echo 10-08-2010)

No doubt the author will (once again) face a barrage of wrath and discord  for his comments over the next few days. I mean, fancy suggesting that our education system has been dumbed down? It just simply isn’t done. And, to alleged that many of our teachers are more unintelligent than some of the brats they turn out, is almost tantamount to heresy. If nothing else, it will create some heat under the collars of teaching union officials.

If you haven’t already gleaned my viewpoint, I can assure you that I  am fully in tune with many of Peter’s comments. My regular readership will already have seen my previous posts on the wonderful youth of this Nation.

Peter also suggests that, despite our kids supposedly receiving an excellent education, their literary and numeric skills are actually abysmal. A factor often evidenced by university entrance officers and many employers. And, succesive government claims (in particular during the last decade), would also have us believe that; more and more children gain higher grades in GCSE exams, year on year… As a direct result of their methodology and good management. So why are so many of our kids apparently so thick? I gave an example of this inability in a previous post entitled Bakers Dozen.

After spending 30yrs of my life working within the public sector, I am fully conversant with how senior managers continually manipulate statistics or, make changes to the base line content being counted. It’s a simple case of cooking the books. The dishonesty is  carried out with a view to justifying public expenditure and political policy. Actions taken purely to curry favour with the electorate. It has been rife in the police service for years so, why should the education system be any different?

I could go on but I won’t. I just had to comment because, I love it when someone actually finds the ferrous spherical appendages to bloody well tell it how it is! Sod the consequences and most importantly, sod upsetting some poor delicate soul who can’t stand to hear the truth, or doesn’t want to. Be that an individual or Government department or agency. Peter’s article is a good read.

Education is… A life long learning quest where the aspiration should not cease until the day we meet the ultimate teacher!

*The Rev Dr Peter Mullen is Rector of St Michael’s, Cornhill and Chaplain to the Stock Exchange. He writes a weekly column for The Northern Echo and pieces for other journals including The Telegraph. He is renowned (and often criticised) for his outspoken satire. He was blasted in various journals back in 2008 for comments that were branded as homophobic and, the church did its utmost to distance itself from them.

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