Magazine article Times Educational Supplement

There Has Never Been a Better Time to Argue Back: Letters

Magazine article Times Educational Supplement

There Has Never Been a Better Time to Argue Back: Letters

Article excerpt

I have often felt alone in the staffroom. You see, I am a long-term Conservative Party supporter. I have even stood in council elections as a Conservative. So please tell UK education secretary Michael Gove (pictured right) from me that simply saying something is the case - for example: "there has never been a better time to be a teacher" - does not make it true ("Teachers are doing it for themselves. Good", Comment, 10 May). The man is in cloud cuckoo land. Real-terms pay cuts, cuts in budgets (both absolute and in real terms), arbitrary and ideologically driven changes without any factual support, selective use of "evidence" to support dubious initiatives: how long a list does he want of his incompetencies and reasons why teaching now is far from the best time ever?

The problem with education, as so amply demonstrated by Mr Gove, is that because everyone has gone to school, everyone thinks they know what teaching is about. When I took up teaching after 20 years of being self- employed in the private sector, bored to death (but relatively well off), seeking a new challenge and wanting to give something back, I quickly learned the truth. …

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