The i Caught my Eye.

10 Mar

I read papers at the weekend but the 40p in my pocket was burning a hole. I saw the obit. of George Martin advertised on the front of the i and went for it. Before I got to the warm and fulsome tribute to the great man, I was hi-jacked by a number of curious items.

Firstly a piece on how ‘battlers and bruisers’ are needed as secondary headteachers to sort out standards. “Uniforms”, said Sir Michael Wilshaw, head of Ofsted, “are all over the place. Scrappy worksheets abound as does low level disruption.” Weighing in to the problem was Nick Gibb, ex KPMG accountant specialising in tax, now Schools’ Minister.

The lifelong Tory activist and financier called for young teachers to be fast-tracked. “Able headteachers should be promoted swiftly from the ranks.” Well, I thought, don’t they need to practise their profession for a while before they catapult to stardom? Promotion too soon can be a double disaster. Firstly the superhead has yet to spend enough time doing what he/she is good at – presumably teaching; secondly, the erroneous assumption that the skills required of a headteacher are similar to the classroom teacher and that experience counts for less that confrontational ability. In my experience the quickly-promoted young star confronts more than reflects. Nick Gibb, as with so many politicians, is an amateur observer. I noted from his Wiki info that, of all the schools which he attended, Maidstone Grammar was far and away the best. Second came Bedford Modern, a noted private school. Not too many of the hoi polloi or top buttons undone in either place. I see that he is MP for Bognor Regis. I spent many an unhappy summer holiday there in the 1950s.

I scanned further items about which I couldn’t have cared less: Sunday trading (SNP taking the piss), Junior Doctors (sorry but both sides are getting it wrong), the Queen and Brexit, the link between obesity and sleeplessness, Chelsea getting PSG -ed and, of course, the EU.

However the news that Ashfield District Council has banned comedian Roy ‘Chubby’ Brown from appearing at the Festival Hall in Kirby had me chuckling. They said that his humour was ‘inappropriate’. Of course it is you stupid dickheads – that’s why he’s popular. And, as far as I am aware, he doesn’t incite terrorism.

There were a number of short items from round the world which kept me abreast of vital matters. The rebels in Columbia and the Polish government ruling that their own courts were unlawful were two items to make me smile and yawn simultaneously. It’s hard to avoid the Trumpmeister and his curious unstoppability. The circus going on over the pond is a joy to behold…from a distance. Did you know that the Kennel Club celebrates its 125th birthday this year and 22,000 tails will be wagging at Crufts today, apparently. Similar events.

I turned back to George Martin. A gentle genius.Go to you tube. All You Need is Love.

One Response to “The i Caught my Eye.”

  1. Nick March 11, 2016 at 11:44 am #

    Some good thoughts there Paul, am looking forward to retiring and having time to reflect! Only 127 emails at work today, such joy to be able to talk to pupils and teach!

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