Monday, September 01, 2008

The joke is on us :-(

I've had one or two SNP friends (yes, I do have them!) suggest to me that I was being just a tad harsh the other day when I likened Scottish Government Education Policy to a joke ...

... I was just beginning to think that perhaps I had let a little bit of unnecessary political bias into my thinking on all of this - until I looked at this morning's Herald :-(

I should be clear - I have no intrinsic issue with composite classes - but they are now being used, along with every other 'fix' possible, to try and drive P1, P2 and P3 class sizes down towards 18 pupils. It is NOT 'fixes' that are required, but MONEY.

And all this for what?

Not one of the three principal SNP Manifesto school-based education commitments will be met no matter what 'fixes' are applied (of that I'm certain), and would it not be better to admit this now and put an end to the ongoing cruel deception - if not bad joke - that these promises can be delivered?

They won't be.


BSH said...

Hey hey! I'll have you know that I was in a composite class for 4 years of primary school in Coatbridge.

It never done me or my 5 comrades any harm, when we were returned to our year group in primary 7 we were top of the class by a mile thanks to sitting through work often a year ahead of schedule.

Andrew said...


Thanks for the comment - I do take your point.

And as I said in the post, I don't have a problem with composite classes per se (indeed, my own son is currently in such a class in an Edinburgh Primary , and I'm entirely relaxed about it) ...

... but its the profligate (and unnecessary) way they are now being used that's the problem for me - not their existence.


BSH said...

Yes I think its entirely appropriate that concerned parents should be allowed the right to chose. In our particular instance Carnbroe primary school is a very high achieving school with a very involved local community. Perhaps this would not work well/at all with other schools.

In our instance the oldest 6 pupils were moved up a year from P4 until P6 year, with the agreement of the parents.

I think it worked to our advantage as we were encourage to partake in lessons more advanced than the sylabus traditionally allows and like all children of such an age, when given the opportunity, we swim rather than sink.

More reflectively it likely falls into the category of the lack of basic skills tough in Scotland when compared to much of the developed world in primary schools. We consistently aim low during school and it has been a problem for many decades.

Children are simply capable of more than the system is capable of delivering, regardless of age.