Parents are now in driving seat
HAVING been a Bristol school governor for almost a quarter of a century and with a sister who has been a teacher since graduation, I am far from starry-eyed over the strictures placed upon the teaching profession and the culture of targets.
Nevertheless, the news that Bristol's secondary school pupils have recently secured the fifth year of rises in attainment levels is very welcome after so many years of under-achievement.
May I also take this opportunity to say how excellent many of the educational polices of Michael Gove MP are in tackling the root causes of 'fashionable' under-performance and unapologetically ratcheting up standards?
It is particularly inspiring that Mr Gove has promised further reforms designed to boost standards.
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Although he has now modified earlier proposals to replace the GCSE qualification, it is encouraging to see he is determined to uphold sound teaching and promote a more rigorous regime for academic measurements.
Mr Gove has also put parents, rather than trendy educationalists, in the driving-seat through the creation of free schools and by encouraging the expansion of academies.
Interestingly, I understand that there are even to be some new grammar school places created for the first time in 50 years (through the expansion of individual schools).
Personally, given this sector's perennial success in national league tables, is it really too much to ask for the next logical step to be taken with the re-introduction of selection on the basis of ability?
Cllr Richard Eddy
Conservative Councillor, Bishopsworth