EDUCATION REFORM: The loony Left is alive, thriving, and educating our children

Listening to Christine Blower at the NUT conference today reminded The Slog of  Private Eye’s anti-hero Dave Spart at his unconsciously hilarious worst.

Christine Blower, NUT General Secretary

I hope Michael Gove was watching the Teachers’ national conference on BBCNews this morning. We were taken over live to see some kind of reincarnated 1940s Russian crypto-Communist triumphaliste being wildly applauded. When I say ‘applauded, I mean noisily worshipped as if she might perhaps be Stalin shortly after an especially severe purge. To be fair, there wasn’t much physical resemblance – Stalin had a less obvious moustache – but the auto-Praesidium reaction she got made me realise yet again just how many of the failed Hard Left of yesteryear have survived unscathed.

The lady in question was the NUT’s General Secretary, Christine Blower. In 1973 she took her first teaching post at Holland Park School, a nice middle-class comprehensive in Kensington & Chelsea,which was then part of that paragon of excellence, the ILEA. There she taught French, revelling in the school’s decision to change from streamed to mixed-ability teaching. Ms Blower prefers this style of teaching becasue – she claims – it does not “create the sheep and goatssituation that comprehensives were set up to avoid”. What Blower will never face up to, sadly, is that this ‘style’ of teaching produces the double-whammy of bored clever kids and frightened average kids. This ‘style’ of teaching, in fact, makes the clever lazy and the average alienated. After thirty or more years of it, we now have a State education system that  ranks 24th in the world. As a result of this ‘style’ of teaching, only Mexico, Portugal and Turkey have worse dropout records than us.

Her ‘review’ of the teachers’ year consisted of the following: fighting alongside anti-fascists, crushing the BNP, smashing the English Defence League, organising anti-racist rock concerts for Hope Not Hate, and sending fraternal donations to the Anti-Nazi League of Radicalised Vegans or whatever they call themselves these days. It was like being in Peter Hain’s head during a nocturnal emission.

Now here are some words entirely missing from her review: education, children, schools, standards, training, excellence, professionalism, the future generation, and abject failure across the board to teach children either social or foreign language skills.

I don’t mind Harriet Harman being deranged, because the more power she and Jack Droney have in the Labour Party, the less chance they have of ever forming a government again in any country anywhere with the possible exception of Asbuckishtan which is a place I just invented. But I do mind very much if maniacal fanatics like this woman wind up bending the mind of my grandchildren. People like her twenty-six years ago put me through a paroxysm of social guilt, by instantly making it clear to me that private education for my own kids was the only way to avoid rearing two ignorant but mindlessly radicalised yobettes.

Why did I want my kids to have a State education? Why was I racked with guilt? I will tell you – without an iota of apology. Because my Grammar School education took me to institutions, experiences, foreign climes, stimulating debates, academic achievement, enormous professional satisfaction and an infinitely broader mind, without myself or my parents having to pay a single penny for it. And because I could never have looked myself in the mirror had I inflicted something utterly worthless on my own children through petty polemics or financial meanness. As Dianne Abbot and her fellow hypocrites would I’m sure agree, this is what it means to be a parent. Oliver Letwin said a few years back that he would rather beg in the streets than send his children to a politicised agit-prop inner-city hotbed of mediocrity. Amen to every word of that.

Many readers will write off this piece as the right-wing rambling of a grubby lower middle-class kid on the make. To which I can only answer, “bollocks”. I despise David Cameron every bit as much for his Etonian-grown decision to drop the reinstitution of Grammar Schools from the Tory manifesto. How smug, bloated and entirely cloned are all these public-school Krug Socialists like Harman, Clegg, and Blair; and how right was Graham Brady –  a product of a fine Mancunian Grammar School – to resign from the Opposition Front Bench on the issue of high standards in State Education.

So as I say, I sincerely hope Mr Gove was watching this claptrap, and that he will at last realise the die-hard cadres of bourgeois weekend militancy he’s up against.  Because if either he – or more likely, the ever-obliging Prime Minister – were to start back-tracking on the wholesale reinstatement of excellent free education in our culture, then they will have betrayed the future of all our grandchildren.

16 thoughts on “EDUCATION REFORM: The loony Left is alive, thriving, and educating our children

  1. there are a few words extra in this part phrase
    abject failure across the board to teach children …..either social or foreign language……. skills

    Upto the mid 70’s when even Comprehensives could have streaming I know that around 4 times the average at the time of us went on into Higher education


  2. As an ex grammar school boy from a great school long gone but not forgotten in the community and the wider world I agree with every word you have written.


  3. Of all the problems the left (and the Unions) has never owned up to, its their major part in the dumbing down of education.


  4. Betraying my ignorance once again, but I simply can’t get my head around why the NUT feels the need to be quite so politicised. I’m guessing it’s simply because if they weren’t, then they’d have nothing really left to talk about, and they (in particular the NUT Executive) would be out of work. I’ve read Christine Blower’s speech from this morning. Here’s a list of topics she covered off. Please see if you can spot those that are in some (any) way related to teaching:-

    1. Routing the BNP
    2. Unite Against Fascism
    3. Love Music Hate Racism
    4. Resistance against education cuts
    5. International Women’s Day
    6. Justice for Colombia

    If I was paying a membership fee to be part of this union, I’d want my money back.


  5. The NUT has long been a bastion of back door Labour left/socialism. It was when I was at school in the 1960s.

    The problem is also much more serious, these people control the education establishment from top to bottom and back. They are the rule in teacher training, in educational research, in the local school authorities and in the government civil service.

    They are the same kind of long term planners as run the EU, they don’t think in terms of their time in the job or their personal success in their aims, they expect their work to take decades and take great care to recruit and nurture their successors so the ‘project’ continues. Set backs, don’t worry, retreat if necessary, lose a battle if necessary, regroup, start again from a different angle, if new hurdles (e.g. school inspectors) are forced on them, accept it and subvert them from within until the ‘project’ is back on track.

    I am not usually one to believe in conspiracy theories, but the downward deterioration of British education based on the same failed theories with nothing changing has gone on so long, 40 years at least, that only a cabal of true believers in control can explain it.

    When you have governments claiming ‘only’ 20% of school leavers are functionally illiterate/innumerate as a success it is clear the lunatics, or those whose intention it is to foster an ongoing and growing underclass, are in charge.


  6. I also won a grammer school education, by passing my 11 plus. But, after I was abused I was too ashamed of having been in a psychiatric home and fearful of being bullied to return to the grammer school, and went instead to a girls secondary school, against the advice of my grammer school headmistress. How I wish I had been braver, trusted her and listened to her advice, the education I recieved at grammer school gave me, in spite of the abuse, a thirst for knowledge, but the secondary school made me just want to leave school. To top it all, I still got bullied!


  7. One point on which you are entirely wrong is when you say that your education did not cost you or your parents a penny.
    Every person in the country, whenever they work or buy something pays for the services the state provides through direct or indirect tax. So you did not just pay for your own childrens education; you paid for theirs and someone elses. This should not be guilt inducing but a cause for considerable satisfaction.
    It is a fact I always use when accused of seeking to “buy privilege” for my own son. The phrase “No, I actually paid for your childs education” usually gives pause for thought.
    And yes, the education I got from my state grammar school was just as good as that he received from his (good) independent school. However that is no longer available from the state (but still paid for, of course).


  8. Spot on John.
    The educational system and many other parts of Britain’s Establishment was stuffed full of Commies/Hard Left whacknuts and other assorted socialists for 13 years under New Labour. Most people don’t realise it, but it amounts to a whacknut socialist takeover from within. We need a McCarthy witchhunt to weed them all out but it’ll never happen.


  9. Still, at least nowadays the pupils can get their revenge by beating the teachers up or giving them nervous breakdowns.


  10. Me and the other half have already decided we’ll be converting to catholicism so we can get our kids in the local school.
    Unless we win the lottery of course, then its private all the way.


  11. Totally agree. I cancelled my own union sub (not-teaching) when they spent so much time on the equality agenda and identity politics but failed to do anything about the fact that our pension fund was developing a massive shortfall.
    My own daughter goes to a state school but its one that we as parents campaigned to have created because the others were so bad. However the ideologues are starting to try to wheedle influence and bring the new one down to the level of the others.


  12. You forgot to realise that ‘New Labour’ was the hidden from of the existing ‘Loony Left’. New Labour had to appear right wing to get elected, but once in power it unleashed it nuclear weapon – mass immigration and political correctness. Only extreme measures will reverse this decline.


  13. My Grammar is still open. My 7 years there convinced me what rotten third rate education they provided.

    My son got much better at his ‘bog standard comp’

    The fact that warped Tories still promote this crap about grammar’s is astounding. They were awful


  14. Pingback: Loony Left does Education |

  15. Teachers vote for their own misery and for the education system to be wrecked by voting for union reps like her. Eg their union reps support inclusiveness of the disruptive elements that make their lives a misery and also that of the other children


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