Saturday, September 17, 2011

Free schools

Your humble Devil is getting increasingly annoyed at the Left's attitude to Free Schools—as exemplified by this piece of shit article (written by some arse called Daniel Boffey in June this year) in the Grauniad.
Critics claim many free schools will offer little benefit to the disadvantaged as initially proposed, but have been established by "sharp-elbowed, well-off parents" in affluent areas for middle-class children. It is also feared that free schools in poorer areas will drain other schools of high-attaining children with the most advantaged backgrounds, creating two-tier education.

Yeah? That might well be true, Daniel—and do you know why? It is because the poor tend to be ruled by Labour Councils—and Labour-dominated local authorities have been fighting the Free Schools with all their might.

Some readers may know that your humble Devil has been tangentially involved with a Free School effort based in a definitely not "affluent area" of south London—in a borough most certainly not dominated by "sharp-elbowed, well-off parents" or "middle-class children" from the "the most advantaged backgrounds".

The efforts to set up a Free School in this borough—a Free School that specifically wants to cater to the poorest and most disadvantaged children in the community (even if it were not subject to precisely the same admission policies as comprehensives)—have been consistently and viciously opposed by the Labour council. Not only this, but the council has actively supported the various vested interests—such as the NUT—that oppose Free Schools in the area.

The Free School has been advised that nearby Tory Council areas—such as Westminster or Hammersmith—would welcome this organisation with open arms, that sites might be found and support given. The contrast with the attitude of this borough's Labour overlords could not be more stark.

You see, when even the egregious and idiotic Melissa Benn can (inadvertently) admit that Free Schools might actually provide a better education, you know that those who oppose them are simply evil fucks protecting their vested interests.

And that, ladies and gentlemen, is why Free Schools will continue to be set up in more "affluent areas": because affluent people tend to vote for Tories, and the Tories are ready and willing to support Free Schools and educational choice.

Whereas the poor tend to vote for Labour: and Labour councils would prefer to keep their citizens poor and ill-educated because, were this to change, the voters realise that Labour might not have their best interests at heart.

6 comments:

ManNotNumber said...

Nail, hammer, head.

the a&e charge nurse said...

The NUT position is set out here, Devil
http://www.teachers.org.uk/files/Free-schools-7003.pdf

There are x5 main objections, the third is probably the most important claiming "Choice and Competition are Ideological Obsessions - They don’t Raise Standards but Widen Inequalities"

The Swedish Education Minister, Bertil Ostberg, has
cautioned the British Government that Free Schools in Sweden have been a failure and warned the British Government not to introduce them. Mr Ostberg stated:
“We have actually seen a fall in the quality of Swedish schools since the Free Schools were introduced”. “The Free Schools are generally attended by children of better educated and wealthy families making things even more difficult for children attending ordinary schools in poor areas.”

In any event - the arguments are morecomplex than 'Labour bad' - 'toriesgood' when it comes to Free Schools.

Andrew said...

"Choice and Competition are Ideological Obsessions"

And a violent, crap monopoly is not? The sooner we remove the government from education (and health-care) the better.

The rest of "the most important" objection is similarly bullshit. If the state can't compete with the market, the answer's certainly not to remove the market.

Peter Carter-Fuck said...

As the obese secretary shagger "Lord" Prescott might say, the danger is that free schools will prove to be good, and that everyone will want to go to them. The NUT are a corrupt bunch of communist wankers. They see their "students" as so much Soylent Green, to be consumed in the cause of keeping their commie wank fest going as long as possible.

the a&e charge nurse said...

"The NUT are a corrupt bunch of communist wankers - the critics of Free Schools are not just NUT members, have another look at what Bertie the Swede has to say.

Andrew - once the state is removed from education (as you quaintly put it) we will see an end to universality. After all the kind of low paid workers so loved by the market do not need not trouble themselves with the likes of Shakespeare or Darwin, now do they?

Andrew said...

"Andrew - once the state is removed from education (as you quaintly put it) we will see an end to universality. After all the kind of low paid workers so loved by the market do not need not trouble themselves with the likes of Shakespeare or Darwin, now do they?"

So what?

I did Othello at school (the mid-90s, in a state school). But I wasn't taught how to write properly.

I think one of those things just might be more important than the other.

"low paid workers so loved by the market"

Wow. "the market" isn't any sort of physical being you know. It's simply a means by which people can voluntarily exchange products, services, and labour.

Some people's labour is worth less than others. And I expect not being able to write well would contribute to that.