Monday, February 02, 2015

Life on Planet Nicky Morgan

This sounds very good: "We will expect every pupil by the age of 11 to know their times tables off by heart, to perform long division and complex multiplication and to be able to read a novel,"

Now who could possibly object to that? If this doesn't happen then clearly it will be all the fault of the teachers.

She laid particular emphasis on the 12 times table in her Andrew Marr show interview because as we all know there are 12 pennies in a shilling so the 12 times table is vital for life. What Marr failed to do was to test her with some Maths questions - that usually silences Tory MPs. It almost silenced Boris Johnson but he was soon his obnoxious blustering self.

I am getting a class set of Ulysses because obviously the government requires them to read a novel and they don't come more novel than that. Unless she defines "a novel" it remains a piece of nonsense and an unmeasurable target.

And rote learning of tables? This is a nod to UKIP's back to the 1950s stance. In those days pupils could recite the tables and frequently didn't understand what they were saying. That is why teachers revolted against parrot learning. Only polly-ticians believe in it. (sorry)

And all of Nicky Morgan's insubstantial promises refer to 2020. By then Nicky Morgan will be a distant memory. Five years is a long time in politics. Do the Maths.

Based on 16 years answering pleas for help from stressed teachers.

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