Showing posts from November, 2011

STRIKE! The farmers and the locusts.

Strike day today. Perhaps you noticed? The Brothers and Sisters were knee deep in the entrails of stockbrokers today, as the workers of the world united and raged against the machine, and the machine stroked its white cat and wondered how it could manoeuvere forty thousand people onto a table so it could laser them into dog food.

Last night saw me jet off from parent's evening to speak at a meeting of NUT comrades in Wembley Park, which I am sure earns me an in with Arthur Scargill if I ever meet him at a cocktail party, which is unlikely. Although I was running on fumes after a rewarding, but exhausting day telling people endlessly about their child's undoubtedly unlimited potential, the welcome was warm and as ever, and it was an honour to speak and be listened to, talking about things I love to talk about: behaviour, behaviour behaviour. I even bumped into a few familiar faces.

I striked/ struck today, not because I am particularly animated by gestures, or by the illusion th…

Why NOT kill a President? The Book of Gove.

A Bible is, or will be on its way to every school. This, of course, has sent precisely half the chattering world into diabetic shock, and the other half into a righteous forced march. In 1858, the first transatlantic cable was sent from Queen Victoria to President Buchanan; it read; 'Glory to God, and peace to his people on Earth.' The cable had taken years to unwind across the uncertain plateaus and trenches of the Atlantic; every time it broke, they started again, usually from the beginning. Nowadays, people get upset when Bibles get sent to schools. I imagine if a new transatlantic message were to be composed today, it would be created by committee, and would be as exciting as a bowl of custard. Sic transit Gloria Mundi.

I'm an agnostic, and a militant one at that, not some woolly, uncertain gimp, but a soldier of agnosticism. My banner reads Uncertain in a polite but assertive way. I despair of fundamentalism on all points of the faith spectrum. I despair of the certai…

Children should 'be good, not bad when they grow up' claims man with degree.

A leading Oxford academic has claimed that if children want to make a moral difference, they should 'become bankers,' despite increasing levels of evidence from banking, Planet Earth and everywhere else that this might not be the case.

'It's simple,' claims Will Crunch, described as an ethicist. 'If kids really want to make a difference, they should go into banking, make lots of money, and then do good things with it. See? Piece of piss. Much better than all that charity bullshit, hanging about on corners wailing about Pandas and cancer.'

Asked if the prospect of people going into banking with the sole intention of making, then giving money away, wasn't approaching an overly-optimistic view of human nature, Mr Crunch was defiant. 'Not at all. Next thing you'll be saying that people who go into an industry with no other terminal goal than the accumulation of profit, are intrinsically evil. Nothing could be further from the truth. Philanthropy com…

2011 Edublog awards

This was the first I'd heard of these awards, although I have no doubt that all over the world lonely men and women annually wet their Y-fronts at the prospect, as I do. Someone kindly nominated me this year, so I felt that it was kind of my education blogger duty to do the same, although I'm aware that the chances of me now participating in what might well be essentially an Albanian pyramid scam are probably high.

I write A LOT, and what with that and teaching, I actually don't get much time to really sit on my thumbs and read too many other things on the net, although I try to hit things that are recommended to me. Some of the ones that I DO make time for regularly are:

Best individual blog:

Scenes from the Battleground

Old Andrew's infrequent (and I do mean f*cking infrequent) blog still packs punch every time it drops. More value added than Mossborne bleedin' Academy. More balls than Billy- Big-Balls.

Best New Blog

Mombasa Moods

Rebecca Gurnham's touching and p…

Inspection reflections


I'm ready- ARE YOU?


Don't Panic! Display on staff room notice board to calm civilian nerves.


The Cult of Clever: Stephen Fry and the Next Generation

Aren't other people just stupid? Not you, though.

I went to see Stephen Fry in what I was hoping was going to be conversation with the stricken muse of articulacy, Christopher Hitchens, at the Royal Festival Hall this week. Alas, the Hitch had selfishly developed pneumonia and begged out of the occasion, which meant that the evening, however charming, would be in deficit of a dialogue by a factor of one, which is often seen as fatal to the enterprise. But like the androgynous protagonists of Battle of the Planets, when Hitch unravels he is replaced by a fighting force of allies and confidantes: in stepped the Archbishops and Cardinals of atheism and reason, Martin Amis, Salman Rushdie, and Richard Dawkins, along with satellite contributions from Sean Penn (how odd), Lewis Lapham, Chris Buckley and others.

The loss was transformational; not that the night was a waste- it is never a waste to see such lions of loquacity prowling and strutting, and talking about themselves to a captiv…

Young Apprentice 3: Smell the Roses

Quote of the night from Zara: ‘You know what they say: there’s no ‘I’ in team.’

Yeah, but there is in ‘bullshit’. Welcome, welcome, welcome back to the only game in town, Young Apprentice. I would have blogged last week’s, but I came up against the problem that THERE ARE ONLY 24 HOURS IN A DAY. We saw the genius of the Comfy Curve, and Harris the Hippo, and Ben got canned because he hadn’t been given a chance to shine yet and wasn’t that sad? With time, and support, we got over it. This week the announcer boomed that the flower industry was worth £1.5 billion every year, like it was the introductory props link for the Sunday night X-Factor guest stars (‘3 billion petals in Norfolk! Grown in half a million gardens in Sunderland!) Flowers. Industry. I’ll never look at a tulip again without thinking of a spreadsheet. A 7am start, and Harry M was ready at the door with a camera team, as you do. ‘You stay here and see if there’s a message,’ he told Lewis in his plummy, commanding tone, ‘I’ll…
young apprentice coming soon......

Educating Essex 7: Unfinished Symphony

Stop all the lesson bells. I thought this blog would last forever. I was wrong. Educating Essex, sponsored by Honda, has been retired to the great Academy Elysium.

This is difficult entry, because EE has given me so, so much material that I feel like Wile E Coyote, a comic heartbeat after he realises he's run three steps over the edge of the canyon edge. *Looks down* *gulps* *looks to camera* *vanishes*

What on EARTH will I write about? Ach, but I felt this way when Jamie's Fantasy Game Show run out of juice; as you get older you realise that your heart will heal in time. There'll be other telly schools. They just grow up, leave you and break your heart *sniff*.

So what have we learned?

Apart from the fact that diameter is circumference divided by pi?

This week the documentarians at twofour gave us their all, in one mighty gasp of hole-in-one casting: Vinni (rap spelling and all) was brought back from the substitute bench, and we were introduced to their secret weapon of ch…