Important contextSuccessful primary schools:Open Futures: growit, cookit, filmit, askit (http://www.openfutures.com/our-curriculum)Watch 2-3mins of this video about Gallions:
Link: with English at the moment, it’s about playing the game of the current exam. This is what I am doing with my Eng Lit class;Sad to say I worry that the focus upon the exam has not taught them the right skills."The Wire: Know Your Place (#4.9)" (2006)Roland 'Prezbo' Pryzbylewski: I don't get it. All this so we score higher on the state tests? If we're teaching the kids the test questions, what is it assessing in them? Grace Sampson: Nothing. It assesses us. The test scores go up, they can say the schools are improving. The scores stay down, they can't. Roland 'Prezbo' Pryzbylewski: Juking the stats. Grace Sampson: Excuse me? Roland 'Prezbo' Pryzbylewski: Making robberies into larcenies. Making rapes disappear. You juke the stats, and majors become colonels. I've been here before. Grace Sampson: Wherever you go, there you are.Validity and reliability.
Mick Waters ‘Thinking Allowed On Schooling’ p. 103: “Schools are driven by data (which is often suspect), their league table position, ever more complex hurdles (such as the proposed Ebacc subjects), inspection (again often suspect), market-driven awarding bodies and ministerial favour.”The IPSOS Mori survey (2012) reported that at key stage 4, drama and performing arts had been dropped in nearly a quarter of schools, 17 per cent had withdrawn art courses and 14 per cent design technology. As a result, if the new EBacc comes into force, then there is a concern that pathways from school to the creative industries will be at risk. Gove claims the Ebacc is optional, but the reality is that it isn’t.
Getting rid of the SATS best education decisionTeachers still relying on old text books, appalling tests…
So how do you escape the Matrix? In a way, it’s easy, bear with me for a moment and shut your eyes. I want you to think of the last beautiful thing you saw or felt. The smile of a loved one, the blue sky, a puff of wind, a lovely taste. Hold that feeling and open your eyes. Let that feeling inform your decisions/your life. Hold it!
Plato’s cave; escaping the “Matrix”; start playing the game for enjoyment, not exclusively “to win”. The obsession withOfsted lesson grading 1, 2, 3, and 4. Performance related pay; the Ebacc.Teach our children to appreciate the wonder of knowledge, the beauty of a blue sky, of a line of Shakespeare, of a molecule, of a snowflake, to feel the wonder of the world around them.Teachers do this every day, despite all the restraints put on them. But our schools would be much more productive and creative places if politicians stopped meddling and started having some faith in teachers. Stop the prescriptions, let us get on with our jobs.
An ebacc too far
Francis Gilbertwww.francisgilbert.co.ukwww.localschoolsnetwork.org.ukTwitter: @wonderfrancis
Recommended reading Assessment in schools, fit for purpose? AssessmentReform Group http://www.tlrp.org/pub/documents/assessment.pdf The Learning Powered School, Guy Claxton et al, (2011)TLO Limited Education: A Very Short Introduction, Gary Thomas,(2013) OUP Thinking Allowed on Schooling, Mick Waters (2013)Independent Thinking Press.