In defence of good local schools for all children

Alan Pagden's picture
There are a lot of reasons for supporting a campaign that aims to defend the concept of the "common school" adequately funded through taxation. Two issues that I am particularly interested in are:

1) How we in the UK, particular in England, can break free from the all pervasive "culture of compliance"? Teachers, and I am one of them, have failed to stand up to central government with its neo-liberal policies and draconian tactics (high stakes testing and Ofsted bullying). Parents, and I am one of them, have had the wool pulled over their eyes (they play into the hands of the politicians e.g. by unquestionihngly accepting the verdicts of Ofsted). And of course it is the children who suffer - they too are coerced into a habitual state of compliance.

2) How a school, at the heart of its neighbourhood, could provide the focus, the drive and the resources for communities to reinvent themselves at this crucial juncture in our species' history. Here I am thinking about facing the future and the need for a carbon neutral economy. This raises all sorts of questions about what children should be doing in schools, how they should be spending their time, and the kinds of relationships that are required to foster the kinds of learning that might be needed.

It is good to know that others too support the defence of local schools.
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