Add criticism into relgious education.

I propose that equal criticisms of all religions should be taught in schools.

The entire key stage 4 of religious education is about Christianity and what the bible says. There should be sections on using logic to defeat god, evidence against relgion, bible criticisms, the evil in the bible (millions of murders in the name of god or ordered by god) or the morality of relgions that are wrong.

Why is this idea important?

I propose that equal criticisms of all religions should be taught in schools.

The entire key stage 4 of religious education is about Christianity and what the bible says. There should be sections on using logic to defeat god, evidence against relgion, bible criticisms, the evil in the bible (millions of murders in the name of god or ordered by god) or the morality of relgions that are wrong.

More widespread legal graffiti walls

I am a street artist, and professional graphic designer. I take pride in the fact that I harbor the skill to create beautiful street art, and enjoy doing so publicly. I teach workshops occasionally underneath the Southbank Centre where there is indeed a legal graffiti wall.

My idea is that to introduce more legal graffiti walls in the UK which are accessible to all. Graffiti is a form of art, and even though there are mindless vandals scrawling obscenities on the walls nationwide, why not give them an opportunity to try and learn to create art in secluded areas.

I can understand that the government seems to assume graffiti artists are mostly vandals with drug problems, however, this is just an old stereotype that needs to be addressed.

Why is this idea important?

I am a street artist, and professional graphic designer. I take pride in the fact that I harbor the skill to create beautiful street art, and enjoy doing so publicly. I teach workshops occasionally underneath the Southbank Centre where there is indeed a legal graffiti wall.

My idea is that to introduce more legal graffiti walls in the UK which are accessible to all. Graffiti is a form of art, and even though there are mindless vandals scrawling obscenities on the walls nationwide, why not give them an opportunity to try and learn to create art in secluded areas.

I can understand that the government seems to assume graffiti artists are mostly vandals with drug problems, however, this is just an old stereotype that needs to be addressed.

Teaching Maths Through the Decades

Teaching Maths through the Decades

  • Teaching Maths In 1970
    A logger sells a truckload of timber for £100.
    His cost of production is 4/5 of the price.
    What is his profit?
  • Teaching Maths In 1980
    A logger sells a truckload of timber for £100.
    His cost of production is 80% of the price.
    What is his profit?
  • Teaching Maths In 1990
    A logger sells a truckload of timber for £100.
    His cost of production is £80.
    How much was his profit?
  • Teaching Maths In 2000
    A logger sells a truckload of timber for £100.
    His cost of production is £80 and his profit is £20.
    Your assignment: Underline the number 20.
  • Teaching Maths In 2005
    A logger cuts down a beautiful forest because he is selfish and inconsiderate and cares nothing for the habitat of animals or the preservation of our woodlands. Your assignment:  Discuss how the birds and squirrels might feel as the logger cuts down their homes just for a measly profit of £20.
  • Teaching Maths In 2009
    A logger is arrested for trying to cut down a tree in case it may be offensive to Muslims or other religious groups not consulted in the felling licence. He is also fined a £100 as his chainsaw is in breach of Health and Safety legislation as it deemed too dangerous and might even cut something. He has used the chainsaw for over 20 years without incident; however, he does not have the correct certificate of competency and is therefore considered to be a recidivist and habitual criminal. His DNA is sampled and his details circulated throughout all government agencies. He protests and is taken to court and fined another £100, simply because he is such an easy target. When he is released, he returns to find Gypsies have cut down half his wood to build a camp on his land.  He tries to throw them off but is arrested, prosecuted for harassing an ethnic minority, imprisoned and fined a further £100.  While he is in jail the Gypsies cut down the rest of his wood and sell it on the black market for £100 cash.  They also have a farewell BBQ of squirrel and pheasant and then leave behind several tonnes of rubbish and asbestos sheeting. The forester on release is warned that failure to clear the fly-tipped rubbish immediately at his own cost is an offence. He complains and is arrested for environmental pollution, breach of the peace and invoiced £12,000 plus VAT for safe disposal costs by a regulated government contractor.

    Your assignment:  How many times is the logger going to have to be arrested and fined before he realises that he is never going to make £20 profit by hard work, gives up, signs onto the dole and lives off the state for the rest of his life?

Why is this idea important?

Teaching Maths through the Decades

  • Teaching Maths In 1970
    A logger sells a truckload of timber for £100.
    His cost of production is 4/5 of the price.
    What is his profit?
  • Teaching Maths In 1980
    A logger sells a truckload of timber for £100.
    His cost of production is 80% of the price.
    What is his profit?
  • Teaching Maths In 1990
    A logger sells a truckload of timber for £100.
    His cost of production is £80.
    How much was his profit?
  • Teaching Maths In 2000
    A logger sells a truckload of timber for £100.
    His cost of production is £80 and his profit is £20.
    Your assignment: Underline the number 20.
  • Teaching Maths In 2005
    A logger cuts down a beautiful forest because he is selfish and inconsiderate and cares nothing for the habitat of animals or the preservation of our woodlands. Your assignment:  Discuss how the birds and squirrels might feel as the logger cuts down their homes just for a measly profit of £20.
  • Teaching Maths In 2009
    A logger is arrested for trying to cut down a tree in case it may be offensive to Muslims or other religious groups not consulted in the felling licence. He is also fined a £100 as his chainsaw is in breach of Health and Safety legislation as it deemed too dangerous and might even cut something. He has used the chainsaw for over 20 years without incident; however, he does not have the correct certificate of competency and is therefore considered to be a recidivist and habitual criminal. His DNA is sampled and his details circulated throughout all government agencies. He protests and is taken to court and fined another £100, simply because he is such an easy target. When he is released, he returns to find Gypsies have cut down half his wood to build a camp on his land.  He tries to throw them off but is arrested, prosecuted for harassing an ethnic minority, imprisoned and fined a further £100.  While he is in jail the Gypsies cut down the rest of his wood and sell it on the black market for £100 cash.  They also have a farewell BBQ of squirrel and pheasant and then leave behind several tonnes of rubbish and asbestos sheeting. The forester on release is warned that failure to clear the fly-tipped rubbish immediately at his own cost is an offence. He complains and is arrested for environmental pollution, breach of the peace and invoiced £12,000 plus VAT for safe disposal costs by a regulated government contractor.

    Your assignment:  How many times is the logger going to have to be arrested and fined before he realises that he is never going to make £20 profit by hard work, gives up, signs onto the dole and lives off the state for the rest of his life?

Scrap sex laws that discriminate against teachers.

Relatively recent law changes now mean that a teacher can be prosecuted for having a sexual relationship with a 16 or 17 year-old. Yet the age of consent is 16! Why should there be special rules for the teaching profession? Doctors and nurses aren't barred from having relationships with people who have been patients in their hospital. Police officers aren't banned from having sex with people who live on their beat. Tax inspectors aren't banned from french-kissing taxpayers!

Now, if a teacher abused their position, that would be a different matter. If they said to a sixth-former, "I'll fail you unless you give me a blow job," then that would be a clear abuse of their position – but prosecutors should have to show that some abuse of authority has actually taken place. The state should not presume that a relationship is abusive just because one partner is a student and the other is a teacher!

A person could marry a 16 year-old and then become a teacher at their school. They could already have a child together. Surely we can't prosecute them or ban them from being at the same school! And if we don't prosecute married couples, why should we discriminate against other couples who choose not to marry?

Why is this idea important?

Relatively recent law changes now mean that a teacher can be prosecuted for having a sexual relationship with a 16 or 17 year-old. Yet the age of consent is 16! Why should there be special rules for the teaching profession? Doctors and nurses aren't barred from having relationships with people who have been patients in their hospital. Police officers aren't banned from having sex with people who live on their beat. Tax inspectors aren't banned from french-kissing taxpayers!

Now, if a teacher abused their position, that would be a different matter. If they said to a sixth-former, "I'll fail you unless you give me a blow job," then that would be a clear abuse of their position – but prosecutors should have to show that some abuse of authority has actually taken place. The state should not presume that a relationship is abusive just because one partner is a student and the other is a teacher!

A person could marry a 16 year-old and then become a teacher at their school. They could already have a child together. Surely we can't prosecute them or ban them from being at the same school! And if we don't prosecute married couples, why should we discriminate against other couples who choose not to marry?

Pupils choosing teachers

The idea that pupils can sit in on teacher interviews and help select teachers is totally ridiculous.  Children will obviously choose those they like the look of, who don't seem to be too strict, or who maybe won't make them work too hard.

This is so demeaning for professional people – they need to be chosen by a panel of other professionals, who know what it means to be a teacher.

This law should be thrown into the rubbish bin of legislation as soon as possible.

Why is this idea important?

The idea that pupils can sit in on teacher interviews and help select teachers is totally ridiculous.  Children will obviously choose those they like the look of, who don't seem to be too strict, or who maybe won't make them work too hard.

This is so demeaning for professional people – they need to be chosen by a panel of other professionals, who know what it means to be a teacher.

This law should be thrown into the rubbish bin of legislation as soon as possible.

Trust the teachers – let them teach properly

The vast majority of teachers are qualified, motivated and knowledgable individuals who know their subjects and their pupils or students, as a group, better than anyone else. They should be allowed to teach the way which delivers the subject knowledge, in their educated opinion, the best way for each individual or group. They cannot do this when bogged down by an ever-increasing burden of paperwork, which takes away from their contact time with their class or group. Trust the teachers to do the job properly, and give them the time and freedom so to do. Less paperwork, fewer targets and decreased inspection will result in a better education for the country's children and students.

Why is this idea important?

The vast majority of teachers are qualified, motivated and knowledgable individuals who know their subjects and their pupils or students, as a group, better than anyone else. They should be allowed to teach the way which delivers the subject knowledge, in their educated opinion, the best way for each individual or group. They cannot do this when bogged down by an ever-increasing burden of paperwork, which takes away from their contact time with their class or group. Trust the teachers to do the job properly, and give them the time and freedom so to do. Less paperwork, fewer targets and decreased inspection will result in a better education for the country's children and students.

A qualified teacher in every classroom

The previous government allowed unqualified staff to be able to take charge of a class to deliver lessons where teachers are absent due to sickness, attendance on training courses or for other reasons.  There was no requirement for any level of education or training nor any limit on the numbers of support staff employed in any school. 

These unqualified members of staff are termed "cover supervisors" or "learning managers" or some other term.

Some schools have as many as 10 members of staff covering lessons.   The work provided is invariably poor in quality consisting of textbook exercises or "do a poster" because the staff concerned are not expected to teach the lesson but simply supervise.

The impact on learning is disastrous.  Pupils can have several lessons of this kind in a week, losing significant chunks of their learning.   Behaviour deteriorates due to the lack of challenge. 

Qualified and experienced supply cover who are able to deliver lessons and not merely "babysit" a class are finding it extremely difficult to find work and large numbers are leaving the profession altogether, a waste of training and expertise.  Many supply teachers are retired senior teachers who have taking early retirement and who want to work on a casual basis but many are professional supply teachers who are too old to compete with newly qualified teachers and for whom supply teaching is a way to stay in the profession.

With the move to academy status there is a grave danger that heads will resolve their budgetary issues by employing more unqualified staff. 

We need to return to the simple principle of a qualified teacher in every classroom.   

Why is this idea important?

The previous government allowed unqualified staff to be able to take charge of a class to deliver lessons where teachers are absent due to sickness, attendance on training courses or for other reasons.  There was no requirement for any level of education or training nor any limit on the numbers of support staff employed in any school. 

These unqualified members of staff are termed "cover supervisors" or "learning managers" or some other term.

Some schools have as many as 10 members of staff covering lessons.   The work provided is invariably poor in quality consisting of textbook exercises or "do a poster" because the staff concerned are not expected to teach the lesson but simply supervise.

The impact on learning is disastrous.  Pupils can have several lessons of this kind in a week, losing significant chunks of their learning.   Behaviour deteriorates due to the lack of challenge. 

Qualified and experienced supply cover who are able to deliver lessons and not merely "babysit" a class are finding it extremely difficult to find work and large numbers are leaving the profession altogether, a waste of training and expertise.  Many supply teachers are retired senior teachers who have taking early retirement and who want to work on a casual basis but many are professional supply teachers who are too old to compete with newly qualified teachers and for whom supply teaching is a way to stay in the profession.

With the move to academy status there is a grave danger that heads will resolve their budgetary issues by employing more unqualified staff. 

We need to return to the simple principle of a qualified teacher in every classroom.   

Restoring Headteachers Discretion for Authorising School Absence

SInce 2007 I think, all absence from school is unauthorised unless it is for exceptional circumstances (bereavment etc).

Prior to that, absence was authorised with the headteachers approval up to a maximum of 10 days per year.

What was wrong with the old system?  Are headteachers not to be trusted to excercise their discretion? Are they really so irresponsible?

We used to use our 10 days for holidays and long weekends to give our children life in the great outdoors away from the classroom and for long haul foreign holidays when prices are cheaper.  And why not?  Its fantastic for their wider education and helps disperse some of the summer holiday crush.  I am sure if the headteacher felt we were exploiting the system they would have not authorised it.

What happens at the moment is that parents less scrupulous than ourselves simply lie about illness, family reunion etc and that makes an honest person really cross!

Why is this idea important?

SInce 2007 I think, all absence from school is unauthorised unless it is for exceptional circumstances (bereavment etc).

Prior to that, absence was authorised with the headteachers approval up to a maximum of 10 days per year.

What was wrong with the old system?  Are headteachers not to be trusted to excercise their discretion? Are they really so irresponsible?

We used to use our 10 days for holidays and long weekends to give our children life in the great outdoors away from the classroom and for long haul foreign holidays when prices are cheaper.  And why not?  Its fantastic for their wider education and helps disperse some of the summer holiday crush.  I am sure if the headteacher felt we were exploiting the system they would have not authorised it.

What happens at the moment is that parents less scrupulous than ourselves simply lie about illness, family reunion etc and that makes an honest person really cross!

Abolish the 3 year wait for EU citizens & UK residents to pay home student fees

My husband (an EU citizen) accompanied me on my 2-year job posting abroad to South Africa, looking after my young daughter. We are now back living in the UK and my husband wants to do a PGCE, but cannot afford to because he would have to pay overseas fees rather than home student fees – a difference of around £10,000. Under current rules, we have to wait 3 YEARS until he will become eligible for home student fees. We have already been waiting 1 year and he is taking whatever low-paid teaching assistant / TEFL jobs he can get. 2 more years to go. It's nuts, especially when there is a shortage of good teachers, that people are forced to wait out 3 years in low paid work waiting for the chance to improve their skills.

Why is this idea important?

My husband (an EU citizen) accompanied me on my 2-year job posting abroad to South Africa, looking after my young daughter. We are now back living in the UK and my husband wants to do a PGCE, but cannot afford to because he would have to pay overseas fees rather than home student fees – a difference of around £10,000. Under current rules, we have to wait 3 YEARS until he will become eligible for home student fees. We have already been waiting 1 year and he is taking whatever low-paid teaching assistant / TEFL jobs he can get. 2 more years to go. It's nuts, especially when there is a shortage of good teachers, that people are forced to wait out 3 years in low paid work waiting for the chance to improve their skills.

Scrap the ‘Institute for Learning’ Quango

This Quango is not needed.  It adds an unnecessary layer of regulation onto a sector that was doing well.  It prevents many people from teaching in the FE sector, for example those who simply taught a few classes a week.

Why is this idea important?

This Quango is not needed.  It adds an unnecessary layer of regulation onto a sector that was doing well.  It prevents many people from teaching in the FE sector, for example those who simply taught a few classes a week.

Teachers need to be assesed mroe throughly.

Firstly, I'd like to apolgoise to Moderator_MOJ for posting this again, I accidently posted it in the wrong section earlier, and also apolgiising to anyone whoose already seen this, however I decided to repost It because I feel it needs attention.

 

Again, I'm sure some of you may already know I'm mearly a school student.

I believe teachers at schools should actively be reveiwed by either outsiders or member of School leadership team. There are many teachers that can make learning difficult.

I'm not asking for "cool" teachers, I'm asking for overstrict or antisocial teachers to be abolished. I personally have a teacher that doesn't understand how to man a class, thats fair enough in most situations. But in a double lesson (2 hours), which I should add are important, no work is ever got done.

I cannot stress enough that it is NOT soly our fault, sure, maybe we contribute, but a teacher should know how to deal with disrubtions, however the teacher in question makes it worse.

 

I peronsally discussed this with a woman at our school who ensured us she'd look out for what is best for us, I told her how it wasn't just his fault but how I felt he was encouraging it/unable to control it. Subsequently she rounded around 15 of us up in a small room and shouted at 15 students and took the word of one teacher known for these issues throughout all of his classes claiming it had nothing to do with him.

Obviously, her shouting had no effect and angered us more and now it's worse than ever.

Why is this idea important?

Firstly, I'd like to apolgoise to Moderator_MOJ for posting this again, I accidently posted it in the wrong section earlier, and also apolgiising to anyone whoose already seen this, however I decided to repost It because I feel it needs attention.

 

Again, I'm sure some of you may already know I'm mearly a school student.

I believe teachers at schools should actively be reveiwed by either outsiders or member of School leadership team. There are many teachers that can make learning difficult.

I'm not asking for "cool" teachers, I'm asking for overstrict or antisocial teachers to be abolished. I personally have a teacher that doesn't understand how to man a class, thats fair enough in most situations. But in a double lesson (2 hours), which I should add are important, no work is ever got done.

I cannot stress enough that it is NOT soly our fault, sure, maybe we contribute, but a teacher should know how to deal with disrubtions, however the teacher in question makes it worse.

 

I peronsally discussed this with a woman at our school who ensured us she'd look out for what is best for us, I told her how it wasn't just his fault but how I felt he was encouraging it/unable to control it. Subsequently she rounded around 15 of us up in a small room and shouted at 15 students and took the word of one teacher known for these issues throughout all of his classes claiming it had nothing to do with him.

Obviously, her shouting had no effect and angered us more and now it's worse than ever.

Slim down the National Curriculum for teachers!

I trained up originally as a primary school teacher in the 1990s, and was very good at my job. I left because of the sheer volume of paperwork required to manage the National Curriculum.

Most of my time was devoted to "benchmarking" and assessing my pupils against various level descriptors. Not only this, but the Literacy and Numeracy hours (the principles of which which I agree with) were intensely prescriptive: we were told how to structure classes, for example, which involved me having to allocate different *topics* (not just differentiated tasks) to different groups of children in their Numeracy lesson, when commnon sense told me they should at least have the same focus, albeit at different levels.

I have since moved on to sixth form teaching, via FE and a stint doing VSO, but I still hear various horror stories about primary teachers having to submit detailed lesson plans and evaluations (including portfolios of photographs) for *every lesson* they teach! I notice that the teachers in the school oppposite where I live,one with a very good reputation, are often at work before 7a.m.

Why is this idea important?

I trained up originally as a primary school teacher in the 1990s, and was very good at my job. I left because of the sheer volume of paperwork required to manage the National Curriculum.

Most of my time was devoted to "benchmarking" and assessing my pupils against various level descriptors. Not only this, but the Literacy and Numeracy hours (the principles of which which I agree with) were intensely prescriptive: we were told how to structure classes, for example, which involved me having to allocate different *topics* (not just differentiated tasks) to different groups of children in their Numeracy lesson, when commnon sense told me they should at least have the same focus, albeit at different levels.

I have since moved on to sixth form teaching, via FE and a stint doing VSO, but I still hear various horror stories about primary teachers having to submit detailed lesson plans and evaluations (including portfolios of photographs) for *every lesson* they teach! I notice that the teachers in the school oppposite where I live,one with a very good reputation, are often at work before 7a.m.