Sunday, 29 January 2012

The Impossible Dream: A teacher interprets

To dream the impossible dream (teaching without all the hassle, stress and neverending marking)
To fight the unbeatable foe (Gove)
To bear with unbearable sorrow (Ofsted)
To run where the brave dare not go (9B's class on a wet, Friday afternoon)

To right the unrightable wrong (correcting 9Bs work)
To love pure and chaste from afar (Miss B, French)
To try when your arms are too weary (from carrying all the marking home)
To reach the unreachable star (or target as it is known)

This is my quest (well my job, really)
To follow that star (A*)
No matter how hopeless (it is FFT D)
No matter how far (value-added must be Sig+)

To fight for the right (answers in an exam)
Without question or pause (Well, lots of questions and pauses - wait time - actually)
To be willing to march into hell (INSET Day)
For a heavenly cause (Identifying C/D borderline students)

And the world will be better for this (intervention programme)
That one man scorned and covered with scars (hopefully only psychological)
Once strove with his last ounce of courage (and a cup of coffee from the staffroom)
To reach the unreachable star (that new floor target)

Sunday, 8 January 2012

New trache of Free Schools announced

A new tranche of free schools has been announced by the DfE.  They have all had permission to open and proceed to the next stage before full funding is agreed.

They are:

The fat Free school
This school, sponsored by Weightwatchers, will open in Oldham and will cater for the large number of obese children in the area.  It will be set up in a specially designed building and will have wider doors and specially reinforced furniture.  The curriculum will contain extra PE sessions with the aim of achieving excellent GCSEs and significant weightloss.

The buy-one-get-one Free school
Set up on a split site, the school will have a retail specialism.  Its main sponsor will be Tesco and the school will cater for 14-16 year olds who wish to go into the retail business.

The Free wheelers school
This unique free school will not have its own building but be allowed to cycle around the country and teach wherever it decides to set up camp for the night.  A strong emphasis on geography and outdoor learning will be amongst its key features.

The Free Nelson Mandela School
Named after the most famous political prisoner, this school will be sponsored by Amnesty International.  Pupils will gain an understanding of the geopolitical context of the world.

Following claims from various organisations, the DfE have made it clear that there is no such thing as the Free Lunch School.  The application for the Free Love School has been rejected following concerns expressed by Nadine Torres MP - though the DfE are investigating whether an Adult Education version can be established for MPs.  They have also criticised the new free school proposed by Antony Worrall-Tompson and do not believe that Scott Free sends the right message.

Wednesday, 4 January 2012

McDonalds to open chain of Free Schools

Sauces at the DfE are confirming that McDonalds, the popular fast food restaurants, are set to open a chain of free schools across the country.

A spokesperson from McDonalds, Mr R. McDonald, today announced the new venture.  He said, "McDonalds already has thousands of restaurants throughout the country, we have sponsored hospital wings and we even have our own university.  Now thanks to Mr Gove we have the opportunity to establish a number of 11-16 schools.

We have learned that we do not have to follow the National Curriculum nor do we have to employ qualified teachers, so we won't!  Instead, we have designed our own McUrriculum.  Our pupils will study Customer Service, Numeracy and Literacy, Food Hygiene, and some will take a Business Management qualification.  We also hope to link up to other McDonalds around the world to give students access to a foreign language.  We intend to create our own version of the EBacc called the McBacc and this will be the only qualification in the world to be served with fries," he joked.

When pressed how the day to day running of the schools would work, Mr McDonald pointed out that the school already had its own uniform, its own motto ('"I'm loving it") and plenty of premises.  He said, "Many of the free schools struggle to find suitable premises, however we have thousands of buildings across the country which could be used at quiet times for learning.  Furthermore, now that tosser* Jamie Oliver can't tell free schools what to serve for lunch we will be able to provide a nutritious, balanced meal for every student each day."

Mr Gove recently confirmed the news when he was overheard by a journalist discussing the proposal over a Big Mac.  Mr Gove reputedly said that, "given all the crazy applications we have had to sift through, this one from McDonalds looks to be quite sensible.  Anyone who can't see how positive this would be must be some sort of left-wing, vegan, failure-loving enemy of progress."

*It is believed that Mr McDonald is referring to Jamie Oliver's renowned ability to mix salad with dressing.