Educational Inequality in England by @TeacherToolkit

Reading Time: 2 minutes

Fighting the Global Education Reform Movement (GERM).

Back in February 2014, I attended a council meeting to look at Raising aspirations and equal-access.

After this meeting and the week I had encountered at school, I felt obligated to blog about two students in my very own place of work. Students who touched me with their stories that were  heart-wrenching; real and poignant. One student posed this question to her peers sitting in the assembly: “How many of you here, have been raised by a single-parent?” The other student described to a room full of adults, how his life was saved by his History teacher, from a life in gangland North London.

“We have an educational system that is designed to polarise people, one that creates an elite who can easily come to have little respect for the majority of the population, who think that they should earn extraordinarily more than everyone else, and defines the jobs of others as so low-skilled that it apparently justifies many living in relative poverty.” (Danny Dorling – The Guardian)

 Photo Credit: stevec77 via Compfight cc
Photo Credit: stevec77 via Compfight cc

As a result of my blog, my good friend @JohnBayley1 who I have worked with over the past 10 years, asked if I could attend ‘How can we tackle inequality in English education?’ at @TheRSAOrg. What you see below, is the footage from the evening from Monday 7th April 2014. @Pasi_Sahlberg and Peter Mortimore addressed a packed meeting at The Royal Society of Arts in London.

They both described the inequalities arising from the English education system and showed how it is linked to the Global Education Reform Movement (GERM). The main components of the GERM are Competition: Standardization: School Choice: Test Based Accountability: Education As An Industry. Countries which adopt this model are held back in their progress and exhaust the student body and the workforce.

Their films should be viewed by every teacher and educator in the world.

The venue:

This is another great example of grassroots education (similar to the TeachMeets model) taking grip of the educational debate. The was the first event of its kind at The RSA.

Royal Society of Arts

Peter Mortimore

Former head of the Institute of Education, Peter Mortimore, speaks about the strengths and weaknesses of English education and what we need to do to tackle the perennial problem of educational inequality.

Pasi Salhberg

Finnish Educationalist Pasi Sahlberg explains why we should ignore the reform strategies put forward by successive British politicians who dismiss the potential lessons of Finish educational reform because of their ideological inconvenience. Sahlberg explains how equity results in higher educational outcomes and more equal educational opportunities for all children.

Educational Inequality: Q and A

This is definitely worth a watch as Pasi Sahlberg and Peter Mortimore answer questions from the audience.

Chaired by its chief executive, Matthew Taylor.

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There will be more events to follow, so if you are interested, please get in touch and leave a comment below.

Thanks go to Trevor Averre Beeson for co-organising the event with John Bayley.

And to Rhonda Evans and her team for all the work to capture the video footage.

Watch this space …

@TeacherToolkit

In 2010, Ross Morrison McGill founded @TeacherToolkit from a simple Twitter account in which he rapidly became the 'most followed teacher on social media in the UK'. In 2015, he was nominated for '500 Most Influential People in Britain' in The Sunday Times as one of the most influential in the field of education - he remains the only classroom teacher to feature to this day ... Sharing online as @TeacherToolkit, he rebuilt this website (c2008) into what you are now reading, as one of the 'most influential blogs on education in the UK', winning the number one spot at the UK Blog Awards (2018). Today, he is currently a PGCE tutor and is researching 'social media and its influence on education policy' for his EdD at Cambridge University. In 1993, he started teaching and is an experienced school leader working in some of the toughest schools in London. He is also a former Teaching Awards winner for 'Teacher of the Year in a Secondary School, London' (2004) and has written several books on teaching (2013-2018). Read more...

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