Waarom burgers vrij laten associëren over nieuwe eindtermen/onderwerpen voor het onderwijs en over zaken die overbodig zouden zijn, door leraren als misleidende stemmingmakerij wordt beschouwd.
There are many people interested in education, and theyre all entitled to their opinion. But that doesnt mean that their opinion is equally valid, informed or desirable. And those of us who stay in schools need to say that more often.
1.The current selection of subjects we offer to our children is by no means perfect. But it wasn't cobbled together by accident.. Ad hoc additions based on short term perceived utility are as welcome as changing your socks while you're running the 100 metres. I, too, would like children to know everything. But until we invent a Time Turner, we'll learn as much as we can, and try to prioritise the important stuff. We can always learn about divorce later.
2.Wilde en oeverloze voorstellen voor nieuwe eindtermen die ook opduiken in 50-dagen-debat van minister Crevits en die Crevits blijkbaar allemaal interessant vindt
A curious assumption appears : that everything that ails society could be mended, if only the education system were tinkered with and tuned in just the right way. A drop more Tolpuddle Martyrs, a pinch less Planck. The curious continuation of this philosophy leads us inevitably to the conclusion that we, the schools, the teachers, are the enemies of utopia; we are the barrier to a new Golden Age. Well, to hell with that.
*How to get a job; How to pay taks; How to vote; How to look after your health; Current events
* What laws there are (HE WAS NEVER TAUGHT WHAT LAWS THERE ARE, hes particularly annoyed about this)
* Financial Advice; My human rights. Apparently theres 30. Do you know them? I DONT - Reciting these rights by rote
*Trading stocks; Where does money come from?; Budget (see: disperse my earnings); The cost of raising a kid; What an affidavit is
* Basic first aid; Recognise the most likely mental disorders; Diseases with preventable causes
* How to buy a house with a mortgage; Advice that could literally save thousands of lives
* Present day practical medicines
* Domestic abuse (and get the facts); How to help my depressed friend with a mental state
* Teaching the kids how to parent; How to have kids when you want one
* Being fluent in two languages
* Political systems. What Im voting on. What policies exist
3.We do not teach because it appears to be immediately practical and useful; we teach because we are helping children to inherit their intellectual heritage, the pearls and rubies of science, art, the humanities. We don't teach it because we think it will help them change a plug (yeah, why isn't he raging about that? Or a million other things Ill categorise as handy to know?) We teach them literature, and mathematics, and art, and science, and a dozen other taxonomic milestones, because they are valuable; because they are important. Because without their acquisition, this generation is dislocated from the last one and every one prior to that, and every cultural and scientific asset is lost.
But teachers have approximately 200 days of five hours apiece per year. As it stands, we barely get them through the syllabuses. Every week I hear a different call from a segment of the chattering classes, insisting that some social ill or other be fixed by (of course) shoehorning something into the curriculum. Thats what they aways say: teach it in schools, and the evil evaporates: sexism; body image; bullying; vandalism
4.But if we focus on what will expedite practical matters alone, we rob them of their birthright. Worse (and here Ill make a practical point), youve hobbled their further studies. If theyre learning about mortgages and how to sign on the dole, the cruel mathematics of time insists they dont learn about Under Milk Wood, or Stalin, or Copernicus. If we dispute that a child should learn quadratic equations, then we leave the next generation of mathematicians helpless until university. And its no good, no good at all to bleat, "Well, we should teach them both then." We cant, we just cant. There arent enough hours in the day.
5.This is one reason why it is so maddening that teachers are so regularly and comprehensively sidelined from discussions about education. We know what can be done; frequently, we know how to pull off miracles. But we cant change the laws of physics. Other people, external to the system, are free to say what they like; to imagine that the teaching week is infinitely elastic, and worse, to believe that any dogma or ideology can be transmitted as easily as a jingle.
We can teach them healthy eating, but we cant make them eat healthily. We could teach them about compassionate relationships, but that wouldn't cure cruelty.
If it barks and lives in a kennel, I call it a dog; if someone claims that what we teach them is worthless and abstract when we pour our souls into its service, I call that an insult to the profession. If this were a Westminster suit raging against the curricular machine, theyd be damned as teacher-bashers. But if youre a rapper, or indeed Ken Robinson, tilting against the windmills of the timetable, they call you Gandhi.
Appealing as such appeals might be, theyre made of mist, a TED happy thought with no respect for the reality of what we try to do. There are many people interested in education, and theyre all entitled to their opinion. But that doesnt mean that their opinion is equally valid, informed or desirable. And those of us who stay in schools need to say that more often.