I was overjoyed today when I heard the news that the coalition government is planning to give teacher more power over pupils and using ex-military staff to teach obedience and respect.
Whilst I imagine teaching to be an incredibly rewarding profession, it is also hard. I believe a good teacher can make a bad subject great and vice versa.
But now it’s got to a situation where you have a virtuous circle whereby teachers are unmotivated because they have unruly pupils in the classroom and can do nothing about it. That then impacts how pupils perceive the lessons and quickly lose interest and become bored and unruly.
I always felt that teachers should be free to exercise the responsibility that has been bestowed upon them – to teach young boys and girls and prepare them for adulthood. This involves teaching them a sense of right/wrong, appropriate/inappropriate, cause/consequence. I feel that this level of hand holding and moddycoddling is also affecting the police force and army (we employ them to do a role so we should trust them to do it properly). Obviously there are some bad apples and people who abuse their position but (a) they are a rarity and (b) the proliferation of information means it is easier to find these things out and deal with them.
So, as a father, this is an important step forward. However, I will not be relying on teachers alone to educate my kids – that’s also MY role. I don’t understand people who expect teacher to be the sole people in charge of their kids education but then do not provide them with the tools/freedom to do so effectively.
Teachers, you have my support and I hope for your sake this actually comes off.
PS: the other element that I think there should also be a shake up is that it should be easier to sack crap teachers – they affect the future of children and if they are not good enough they either improve or they should find another profession.