Just wondering, if it is within forum rules, whether we can extend our discussions to include education reforms.
With the revolting John Prescott disagreeing with Labour party proposals, along with 58 backbenchers, to introduce what is termed a two-tier system, is there a need to change the existing system, and if there is what would be an ideal alternative?
I think every LEA should follow the same system.
I think that there should be no choice available at the primary level, children should go to their nearest catchment school or their nearest religious school and follow a national curriculum. I believe that communities have been fragmented and that schools should be the centres of communities. I also believe that the transportation of large numbers of children between 8.00-8.30 a.m. and 3.30-4.30 p.m causes road traffic problems and increases road traffic accidents.
I think that selection should be made at KS3 rather than KS2 and that the choice should be based firstly on what the student wants to do. If they want to follow an academic route they would need to demonstrate a proficiency and desire to do so, further education and higher education would then provide an existing route for them to follow. If they want to follow a vocational route then a system should be created to allow this and suitable provision should be made to extend vocational training to a trade of choice in the same way that the academic routes provides a choice of degree.
This is not a two-tier system, the quality of the academic teaching and the vocational training would be focused on outcomes and achievement.
I would suggest a system of "holding back" (if that is the right expression) students who have not achieved basic skills levels in numeracy and literacy, not allowing students to proceed past the KS3 level for one year to allow them to catch up. This system of "holding back" already exists within the 'A' level system where students who do not pass the AS level in the first year re-sit it in the second year then proceed to A2 level in the third year.
I think the system of "holding back" at this age will help to clearly identify students with SEN at the specific and general level, and money that is currently waisted can be used more effectively to help students integrate into the system.
How does this link to 11+? It would mean the end of 11+ selection for ten year olds. I think a lot of people agree that imposing great pressure on ten year old children to pass selection tests is inappropriate. I, as a tutor, work with a system, but that does not mean that I agree with the system.
Don't forget to buy the goose fat for your roast potatoes, a lot of stores will run out of it by next weekend.