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Tables of hypocrisy


Hated schools inspectorate Ofsted is expected to say that schools in England are improving in its annual report. Yet the report will lay the groundwork for further attacks on education.

Schools are already graded in league tables. These rely on test results that distort education and give no sense of children’s real level of understanding. Schools judged to be “failing” risk being closed or forced to become a privately-run academy.

Now Ofsted boss Sir Michael Wilshaw has graded entire local authorities based on assessments of schools. He says some councils aren’t doing enough to improve. Wilshaw talked up differences between local authorities with “similar demographics”.

It was an attempt to play down the impact that social factors, such as poverty or racism, have on educational achievement. He says teachers who complain of stress are making “excuses for poor performance” and has denounced “moaning” heads.

All of this masks the real factors that shape education while allowing the Tories to impose their “solutions”—privatised academies and free schools.

Socialists are against such a narrow view of education. We think everyone has the right to education and that it’s value isn’t based on test scores or whether it helps someone get a job. The Tories’ agenda has nothing to do with what’s best for children.


Article information

What We Think
Tue 27 Nov 2012, 18:57 GMT
Issue No. 2331
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