Shakespeare is wonderful. Seamus Heaney, a revelation. But if we want to share and teach literature that will inspire progression and self-belief no matter what? I can think of no better work than I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings by Maya Angelou.
Michael Gove's intention to axe American Classics (To Kill A Mockingbird, Of Mice and Men and The Crucible) from the GCSE English Literature syllabus ...
Dear Mr Gove, I woke up yesterday to a news feed awash with fears that you had plans to axe To Kill a Mockingbird and Of Mice and Men from the curric...
Britain has indeed produced some of the world's best literature, but to presume that we have done so alone and prescribe a romp through literature that assumes as much ignores the world outside of our shores. If you want to inspire a love of literature, by all means select politically diverse works, gorgeously written, intellectually challenging pieces. But do not pick and choose a whole curriculum in accordance with a narrow, personal political vision.
So a well-known Sunday Colour Supplement has issued some good advice, this weekend, on how normal women can emulate 'expensive' beauty using products and procedures in their price-range.
Who'd have thought that data privacy was an issue in the 17th century? "I know where thou dwellest" proclaims the King James Bible. 400 years later, a...
Heading into exam season, it's hard not to be aghast at the pressure and panic that prevails in households this time of year. My daughter alternates between grim perseverance and limp hopelessness while many of her peers surrender to hysteria at the slightest challenge. While doing their best to support their children though the ordeal, sane parents must stop and ask: do these exams prove anything?
The worst thing about it is that Michael Gove has the potential to be a truly excellent minister. He is an intelligent man, who genuinely cares about his department and education in general. I can see no reason to indicate that he is motivated by anything other than the best of intentions.
As teachers gather at the NASUWT Annual Conference over the Easter weekend they will, of course, be concerned about the relentless attacks that the teaching profession has suffered over the last four years, along with other public service workers, on their pay, pensions and conditions of service.
David Cameron said when he came to power he wanted to improve people's happiness - that government policy was to be more focused on those things that make life worthwhile. To this end, the Cabinet Office has recently revealed which jobs in the UK give us the most satisfaction. Top of the list, of 274 job titles, is vicar; bottom of the list, is pub landlord. It is perhaps a surprise that these two jobs should be at opposite ends of the table given that they share many similarities: they both have dwindling regulars, both dish out wine and nibbles and if you spend a long time in either's establishment, you can think imaginary people are talking to you.
"Born Londoners are actually rather friendly", I typed. "It's the blow-ins that aren't". I was swiftly accused of both xenophobia and elitism, so I had to clarify. Londoners come in every race and creed imaginable.
Former children's minister Tim Loughton said last week that improving educational outcomes is the key to tackling youth unemployment. He's absolutely right, and it is early intervention programmes like ours that can help to ensure the most disadvantaged young children and teenagers are able to achieve their full academic, and personal, potential.
This has been a week disproportionately affected by endings. The How I Met Your Mother finale brought Ted Mosby's rambling and often wildly inappropriate story to his kids to a conclusion that had mixed reviews, which I won't divulge lest I sound the spoilers klaxon...
So far, 2014 seems to be the year that coding hits the mainstream news agenda. Earlier in March, we saw a huge push to get coding onto the curriculum and into the workplace, with Education Secretary Michael Gove announcing that this year was the 'Year of Code'.
Like poor managers the world over, Michael Gove believes in performance-related pay. Although not subject to this regime himself, he imagines that teachers will care about students more, be yet more passionate, focused, organized, energetic and committed if there's more money in it for them. Why would he imagine such a thing?
Who is in the right here? Hard to say. As a nation we should support the plight of teachers who supply arguably one of the most important services in the county, the people we charge with enriching the intellect of our young people. But national strikes are becoming annual events. This will be the third strike since 2011.