Originally Posted by Alcalaina
I think Michael Gove is a giant [string of asterisks] and the direction education is going in the UK gives me the shivers, but this particular issue does seem to make a lot of sense. The idea that teachers aren't allowed to restrain violent children who are fighting, or comfort a child in distress with a big hug, is totally bonkers.
I believe these rules were introduced as part of John Major's "Children's Charter" in the 1980s? They may have been well-intentioned but it is definitely time for revision. This proposed change isn't a endorsement of corporal punishment or a passport to paedophilia, it's a return to trusting teachers to use their own judgement.
When a 14 year old thug can almost ruin a good teacher's career by pretending that the teacher hit him, even when there is no evidence, the teacher is automatically suspended - guilty until proven innocent. That just ain't right!
This is an issue we have been campaigning on for years. I know of teachers whose lives have been ruined by false and malicious accusations.
The question of restraint is complicated. In my younger days I might -just might -have been able to restrain a violent teenager but no way could you expect a young female untrained in martial arts to control a knife-wielding Year Ten student.
I too am appalled at the direction education in the UK has been taking for the past few decades. In spite of the billions thrown at education by the Blair and Brown Governments we have slipped way down international league tables. In my time in teaching I have seen standards, both academic and social, slowly slide. The poor quality of many teachers is the unspoken 'secret' in teaching unions. As an employer I was appalled at the illiteracy and inarticulacy of job applicants.
We have failed the children of the less well-off in our society by transforming education into social engineering. The purpose of education is not to level down in the name of some daft theory of 'equality'. No wonder there is a large number of NEETS. No wonder my son has to use Indian subbies for his IT work.
If we sent fewer young people on university courses of dubious quality and value and concentrated on quality technical education in all its forms -engineering in all its forms, higher IT skills,and so on -we might, just might, not only give young people an education which provides them with the knowledge and skills to be able to fully participate in the working life of the country but also turn out socially aware and responsible citizens with a deserved place in society..