Politics

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sejintenej
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Re: Politics

Post by sejintenej » Mon Oct 20, 2014 1:43 pm

rockfreak wrote: "Surely, in a western European state in the 21st century, all youngsters are entitled to a good education. Luck shouldn't come into it." .
There is a finite number of competent teachers, many being unable to speeeel properloike or do simple sums. Therefore those schools like CH which can attract the good teachers get the lucky pupils.
rockfreak wrote:Someone said that we need to extend this standard of education. Fine, I said, but are we prepared (especially the richer ones) to pay more tax for the purpose. .
Fine, but given the poor education of many of those going into the teaching profession money is not a factor. What is needed is an order of magnitude improvement in education of wouldbe teachers (and all the rest). First of all, tough discipline in classrooms with no heed paid to parents complaints about multihour and weekend detentions. Next, end of year exams for all pupils and those who do not get a good mark (and make it tough) have to stay down for another year. Third; competence exams for teachers; spelling, grammar, basic maths, civics. There should be a zero tolerence on English and basic maths for ALL teachers. Fourth; a requirement on parents that their children speak English before coming to school; failure after 3 months warning equals inadequate care in the home resulting in the child being taken into care immediately
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dsmg
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Re: Politics

Post by dsmg » Mon Oct 20, 2014 10:45 pm

sejintenej wrote:
rockfreak wrote: "Surely, in a western European state in the 21st century, all youngsters are entitled to a good education. Luck shouldn't come into it." .
There is a finite number of competent teachers, many being unable to speeeel properloike or do simple sums. Therefore those schools like CH which can attract the good teachers get the lucky pupils.
rockfreak wrote:Someone said that we need to extend this standard of education. Fine, I said, but are we prepared (especially the richer ones) to pay more tax for the purpose. .
Fine, but given the poor education of many of those going into the teaching profession money is not a factor. What is needed is an order of magnitude improvement in education of wouldbe teachers (and all the rest). First of all, tough discipline in classrooms with no heed paid to parents complaints about multihour and weekend detentions. Next, end of year exams for all pupils and those who do not get a good mark (and make it tough) have to stay down for another year. Third; competence exams for teachers; spelling, grammar, basic maths, civics. There should be a zero tolerence on English and basic maths for ALL teachers. Fourth; a requirement on parents that their children speak English before coming to school; failure after 3 months warning equals inadequate care in the home resulting in the child being taken into care immediately
Shouldn't we just gas them?
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sejintenej
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Re: Politics

Post by sejintenej » Tue Oct 21, 2014 1:44 pm

dsmg wrote:[quote="sejintenejine, but given the poor education of many of those going into the teaching profession money is not a factor. What is needed is an order of magnitude improvement in education of wouldbe teachers (and all the rest). First of all, tough discipline in classrooms with no heed paid to parents complaints about multihour and weekend detentions. Next, end of year exams for all pupils and those who do not get a good mark (and make it tough) have to stay down for another year. Third; competence exams for teachers; spelling, grammar, basic maths, civics. There should be a zero tolerence on English and basic maths for ALL teachers. Fourth; a requirement on parents that their children speak English before coming to school; failure after 3 months warning equals inadequate care in the home resulting in the child being taken into care immediately
Shouldn't we just gas them?[/quote]

Nitrous oxide (or wasn't your teacher up to that)?
It was said that, when I did A levels, that they were avbout the same standard as after 1 1/2 years at a US Ivy League university. I wonder what the comparison is now.
More seriously, the other gas should be reserved for those who allow standards to slip, those who want teachers to get away with poor pupîl results, those who don't allow teachers EFFECTIVE punishments for poor or disruptive behaviour, those who consider that even those who don't learn should have equally top jobs to those prepared to work ..... That of course would deal with the national overcrowding and work shortage situation though of course we could adapt the Chinese system; no children allowed

To give you an idea of the practical side I was a trainer in a bank dealing with interest and other charges. All applicants had to have at least a C grade GCSE pass in Maths but many of those were incompetent so I made up a simple, work based, test paper. (Unlimited time, unlimited scrap paper, no calculators)
With a year calendar on the wall: "What is the date 93 days after May 3rd?
There was a + and - question; add two numbers and put the answer in the space below. Then add a third number, answer in space, then from that deduct a number (answer in space below) and finally add a number to that. All numbers were five figures plus two decimals; it never went negative. Out of the first 17 applicants to take the paper 8 did not get either of those or any one of the other three equally job related questions correct.
My neighbour, the deputy head of a large state school, stated that it is the duty of employers and certainly not schools to teach such maths and we shouldn't be allowed to set tests; that school was immediately blacklisted.

dsmg
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Re: Politics

Post by dsmg » Tue Oct 21, 2014 11:12 pm

My Science teachers were useless (or was it me?). Phallic Mathews, Potty Burr, Tangent Sillett, PF Higgins, I seem to remember a Wilson as being the one who taught me most although it can't have been very much as I failed Physics and Chemistry O level twice, getting an 8 the first time and a 9 the second. Luckily I was good at languages and now run my own language school and also work as a translator. Could that have been due to Johnny Stein and his ´reproductions`or Bokker Bardot maybe?
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rockfreak
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Re: Politics

Post by rockfreak » Wed Oct 22, 2014 8:32 pm

The teachers in our state system that I talk to all say the same. If education secretaries would lay off testing, targeting, assessing, Ofsteding and lumbering us with ridiculous quantities of paperwork, we could actually get down to teaching for ten minutes at a time.

sejintenej
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Re: Politics

Post by sejintenej » Wed Oct 22, 2014 10:03 pm

rockfreak wrote:The teachers in our state system that I talk to all say the same. If education secretaries would lay off testing, targeting, assessing, Ofsteding and lumbering us with ridiculous quantities of paperwork, we could actually get down to teaching for ten minutes at a time.
Certainly they are correct but if the teacher doesn't know the subject perfectly and be enthousiastic how can he/she teach it?
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LongGone
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Re: Politics

Post by LongGone » Fri Oct 24, 2014 12:02 am

As with so many topics, the extremists dominate the conversation, but probably don't represent the norm. After fifty years in teaching i have seen people at the extremes, but they are not representative. There are many truly abysmal teachers out there, are there are some amazing teachers that amaze me. Neither are the norm. Most teachers are competent and spend far more time than their salary would imply.
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sejintenej
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Re: Politics

Post by sejintenej » Sun Oct 26, 2014 5:45 pm

LongGone wrote:As with so many topics, the extremists dominate the conversation, but probably don't represent the norm. After fifty years in teaching i have seen people at the extremes, but they are not representative. There are many truly abysmal teachers out there, are there are some amazing teachers that amaze me. Neither are the norm. Most teachers are competent and spend far more time than their salary would imply.
Perhaps I overemphasised the "competence" factor. My second paragraph raised the subject of intention and vision; I mentioned the school deputy head who considered that schools should not teach simple addition and subtraction or the commonsense of counting days on a printed calendar. To me that is what is wrong with the present state system; kids should be stretched just as they will be stretched when they leave school. Looking back the combination of Kit Aitken, Crosland, Potts and others including my peers seemed to stretch me more than I was stretched at work for the following 15 years; I had learned how to "take it"

OK so there are amazing teachers (as most of us experienced) but it is the quality schools and head teachers who attract them; hence the likes of Eton, Harrow, CH etc get more than their fair share so lucky is the lad or lass who can benefit from their ability.

"spend far more time than their salary would imply"; surely that is not just teachers. For one 11 month period I was working 20 days in every 21, from 9am to 11pm except Fridays when it was from 9am to 6pm Saturday. Later we would give our lawyers specifications at 6pm and expect completed 120page contracts at 8am the next day and after that when I started actually writing the documents and travelling the hours really started rising. (Oh, yes, I didn't get a single bonus though my long suffering wife did get a memorable present from one client). Yes, teachers do long hours but at least they can go home every night and they know from one day to the next what to expect.
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Re: Politics

Post by rockfreak » Mon Oct 27, 2014 8:41 pm

I would query whether the public school figures who emerge from the system to run the country are actually much good. Why is it that in the so-called Nordic and Rhenish countries, where there isn't a system of an "elite" 7% continuing to corral all the advantages to their particular tribe, their economies work better (or did at least up to the Eurozone crisis) and there is better social cohesion - less inequality, more of an effort to see that all are catered for and, as far as I can tell, more smoothly run public services.
The psychiatrist Nick Duffell (ex-public school and Oxford) is fascinating about this in his latest book Wounded Leaders. He believes that instead of visionaries and statesmen, the elite schools merely produce people who have learned to survive and cover their backs at their boarding schools and that this has given them both an "entitlement illusion", as he calls it, plus a "defensive aggressive" mode of dealing with people because they don't know any other way. He believes that the elite schools (as well as Oxford) teach people to talk rather than to think. In other words they produce glib and confident sophists rather than intellectuals. The dismal state of this country at present, economically and socially, is certainly no credit to the posh elite who overwhelmingly run it.

sejintenej
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Re: Politics

Post by sejintenej » Tue Oct 28, 2014 5:53 pm

rockfreak wrote:I would query whether the public school figures who emerge from the system to run the country are actually much good. Why is it that in the so-called Nordic and Rhenish countries, where there isn't a system of an "elite" 7% continuing to corral all the advantages to their particular tribe, their economies work better (or did at least up to the Eurozone crisis) and there is better social cohesion - less inequality, more of an effort to see that all are catered for and, as far as I can tell, more smoothly run public services.
The psychiatrist Nick Duffell (ex-public school and Oxford) is fascinating about this in his latest book Wounded Leaders. He believes that instead of visionaries and statesmen, the elite schools merely produce people who have learned to survive and cover their backs at their boarding schools and that this has given them both an "entitlement illusion", as he calls it, plus a "defensive aggressive" mode of dealing with people because they don't know any other way. He believes that the elite schools (as well as Oxford) teach people to talk rather than to think. In other words they produce glib and confident sophists rather than intellectuals. The dismal state of this country at present, economically and socially, is certainly no credit to the posh elite who overwhelmingly run it.
There is a saying "statistics, statistics and dam*ed lies". In general terms a competent person can bend statistics to suit their purpose as today's news demonstrates.
You are not comparing like with like; for example in at least some EU counbtries the slipper, cane or hand is still in recognised use; parents and teachers have a weapon to ensure proper behaviour as I have seen with my honorary niece and nephew. In France behaviour is taught from the first entry into school - proper behavious, politeness, table manners ..... and in the small villages I frequent everyone is related and takes part in disciplining the children. In another European country where I have worked school work is heavy and disciplined - I was taught to ski-jump by a girl who had never been outside her small village but spoke fluent technical and colloquial English - she was 6 1/2 and had to listen to the BBC radio news every evening.
More smoothly run public services? I have to be careful here but there can be massive exceptions. One I can mention is that if you are an entrepreneur in France and are injured / ill you get absolutely nothing from the state and have to pay for medical care. (Afriend had a heart attack, will never work again and despite paying in to the system he will never get a brass cent). As for the central system I couldn't sell my farm if I wanted to; to sell I have to have an approved expert's report on the sewage system. There is no expert approved by the ministry body and none will be considered this year so sales of all property are effectively prohibited by law.

By contrast Britain is a vicious jungle where survival is the first aim. Criminals (or those against whom there is evidence) are often not prosecuted so they continue with their crime, self protection is a criminal offence and those who do get to prison live better than those outside. One criminal I know of (in the late 1800's) was so shunned that he had to flee to Paris and from there to Havana to die in poverty; worse still his distant relatives were almost banned from their employment because of the bad blood. ¤¤¤ Modern day criminals get everything given to them. I see the cow in the Baby P case is complaining that her being named (against her civil rights) is preventing her getting employment; my view is that she should have thought of that before messing up the kid's life.

¤¤¤ that crime paid for two CH Presentations but I doubt the other pupils know that.
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rockfreak
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Re: Politics

Post by rockfreak » Sat Nov 08, 2014 9:33 pm

I wasn't aware that France fell under the headings of Rhenish or Nordic countries.

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Re: Politics

Post by anniexf » Sun Nov 09, 2014 10:58 am

rockfreak wrote:I wasn't aware that France fell under the headings of Rhenish or Nordic countries.

And I wasn't aware that opinion, bile and anecdote counted as evidence, Rockfreak, but that's all we're getting! Ramble, ramble .. :roll:

dsmg
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Re: Politics

Post by dsmg » Sun Nov 16, 2014 12:31 pm

Freaky, there’s a mini revolution going on in Spain now with a new political party formed only 6 months ago by ordinary people and led by university professors called Podemos but which is already a major force and could even win the elections next year. They are trying to sweep clean the awful cases of corruption that plague Spain from the Royal (better royal) family down. It’s unbelievable the number of cases that are coming to light with corrupt politicians (and union leaders) who have been evicting poor people from their homes and forcing repressive measures on the general public saying we must all tighten our belts while fleecing for everything they can get out of the system and spending millions on flights, hotels and all number of things. Some of these cases have been in the courts for years as they appeal and appeal and meanwhile they continue in their posts. Podemos have promised to cross off their lists anyone suspected of corruption. Obviously the elite are very loath to give up their position of power so they are trying to discredit Podemos all they can saying that they are long haired freaky lefties who are going to expropriate people’s houses and nationalize everything. It’s all going to be exciting.
Power to the people!! :rolleyes:
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sejintenej
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Re: Politics

Post by sejintenej » Sun Nov 16, 2014 4:06 pm

dsmg:
Is the problem any different elsewhere? Often it is better hidden. For example contestants chosen for the next Parliament include six (4 Labour, 2 Lib Dems) who were found out and chucked out in the expenses (snouts in the trough) scandal.
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Re: Politics

Post by dsmg » Sun Nov 16, 2014 4:45 pm

I think things are a lot worse here Senti. In Britain you hear of people buying garden gnomes or kitchenware on their expenses. These guys here were spending hundreds of thousands of pounds with what are called black credit cards. One guy visited his girlfriend in the Canaries 32 times in two years. Another ran up thousands of euros in gay clubs. Another won one and a half million on the lottery (likely story) and forgot to declare it. Another said he got all his money cos he inherited two million from his mother who it turns out had a little bar in a provincial town. Others have been caught taking suitcases full of money to Andorra and Switzerland, a lot of it seemingly coming from dodgy contracts with building companies. We have airports which have never seen an aeroplane. Incredible motorways with virtually no cars on them. There are more empty houses in Spain than in the rest of Europe altogether and yet they are evicting people left, right and centre. Of course Britain has its problems but check out Spain, Greece and Portugal and if the corruption is so bad here I can't think what it must be like in third world countries.
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