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Education Reform Must try harder

by Delia Forrest

WHEN I think about the Scottish Government’s proposed education reforms I imagine radical changes could be John Swinney’s legacy but education is a no-win situation. Always on the political agenda and never delivering.

‘The Scottish Government is reviewing how schools should be governed… help head teachers find the best ways to raise attainment’ Jamie McIvor, BBC Scotland 9 December 16. Includes giving head teachers more autonomy which is a cost cutting exercise, not an education exercise.

The reality of education reform is anything but radical and brings minimal change. Teachers will tell you they’ve heard it before and the proposed changes affect their already burgeoning workload with little benefit for pupils. ‘Reform’ is a catch-phrase banded about by governments in an effort to persuade the voters that real change will come. But there haven’t been any real reforms since the 19th century with the basis for the current model of education which introduced mass ‘education’ to mere child workers, previously deemed unworthy of education. New Lanark, where Robert Owen and David Dale created a utopian society and provided schooling for 500 children in one of the world’s first free everyday schools. THAT was reform. From nothing to something radical that benefitted the masses.

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iScot Magazine
January 2017
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