Given that he has a bit of form with such pledges, Boris Johnson’s promise that he would ensure every secondary school in England would spend £5,000 per pupil per year was bound to raise an eyebrow or two. The first – and most obvious – question to be raised by the promise made by the frontrunner to replace Theresa May as prime minister is whether the money is there to fund it. The Treasury has been squeezing schools’ spending since 2010 as part of the government’s austerity drive, so would Philip Hammond (no big fan of the former foreign secretary) simply say no? In reality, that is the wrong question. The precise details of Johnson’s proposal to even up secondary school spending are not entirely clear, but look much more modest than the promise by one of his rivals, Michael Gove, to spend an extra £1bn a year on education. Under current government plans, secondary schools are supposed to receive at least £4,800 per pupil this year. … [Read more...] about Boris Johnson’s schools pledge is more a matter of difference than cost
Wisbech grammar school
Michael Gove is Mr M'Choakumchild and Thomas Gradgrind personified: "What I want is, Facts. Teach these boys and girls nothing but Facts. Facts alone are wanted in life. Plant nothing else, and root out everything else." In Gove's schools, whatever might seize the imagination, give pleasure and stay in the heart and mind for a lifetime longer than rote-learned facts is being rooted out. When he has done with cleansing the curriculum, it may be the case that fewer people know who Gradgrind and M'Choakumchild are. Dickens and much of literature will be a closed book to those not lucky enough to encounter them outside their exam-crammed education. English literature is to be stripped out of the core English GCSE exam, leaving nothing but grammatical correctness and straitjacket language reduced to right and wrong answers. Literature is to become an optional extra, and probably not a highly regarded one, for fear it might let the imagination roam dangerously free. English language, maths, … [Read more...] about In Michael Gove’s world Jane Austen, Orwell and Dickens will die out
It was a toxic routine: plan lessons until 1am, wake up at 5am in a sweat, vomit, go to work, teach. “I lost a stone and a half in two months,” Dan Lintell said. “I was having heart palpitations and panic attacks. My body was totally exhausted. I couldn’t go on.” He had barely completed his first half-term as a newly qualified teacher. The start of the school year in September had been filled with optimism. After a successful 20-year career as a design engineer, Lintell decided he wanted to become a teacher. This made him what the government called a “high-calibre career changer”, who would revitalise schools and bring experience from the “real world” into the classroom – in his case, teaching physics at a comprehensive in Leicestershire. “The idea was to spend time with my daughter, who was turning four,” he said. “The irony is that I barely got to see my family. I was doing my job, coming home, having … [Read more...] about Burned out: why are so many teachers quitting or off sick with stress?
The death toll of the White Island volcano disaster is expected to rise today as authorities attempt to salvage and identify eight bodies resting on the smouldering rock. Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison confirmed on Tuesday three Australians had been killed, eight more were missing - feared dead - and 13 were fighting for life in hospital with horrific burns. The group 24, who were on board Royal Caribbean cruise liner Ovation of the Seas, were on a tour of White Island when the volcano erupted on Monday - spewing smoke, ash and debris thousands of metres into the air. Two Sydney families of four, a mother and daughter from Brisbane and a father and daughter from Adelaide were among the victims listed yesterday, but it is unclear if they are among the dead, missing or in hospital. New Zealand authorities say eight people remain unaccounted for as their rescue mission enters its third day. The number of … [Read more...] about Three killed, eight presumed dead and 13 clinging to life: The Australians – including two families of four and a mother and daughter on holiday – feared wiped out in the White Island volcano tragedy
WITH his love of designer clothes and private planes, Umar Kamani is every inch the jet-setting playboy. He rubs shoulders with the likes of Will.i.am and Jennifer Lopez, drives a fleet of supercars and holidays in exotic places. Not bad for a lad who was expelled from school and grew up in a house crammed with 18 family members. Umar, 31, is a member of the founding family behind Boohoo, the online clothing retailer that started life as a simple market stall and is now a big name in the fashion trade. While high street stores such as Debenhams, New Look and Marks & Spencer have seen sales plunge, Boohoo has bucked the trend. In the first half of this year it reported a hefty 43 per cent rise. The Manchester-based firm specialises in fast, cheap fashion for tweens and 20-somethings and includes offshoots BoohooMAN, PrettyLittleThing and Nasty Gal, together worth £3.8billion.Its executive chairman, Umar’s dad Mahmud, and his business partner Carol Kane — who started … [Read more...] about How the face of Boohoo went from getting expelled and living with 17 relatives to billionaire playboy pal to the stars