How I hate the phrase "driving up standards". Every time I hear it, I see primary-age schoolchildren, bent low and sweating over heavy oars, struggling to propel the great ship of education towards some distant, hazy destination that their elders and betters have deemed they must aim for.
Schools, you either love them or hate them, a little bit like Marmite I guess. Some say school years are the best years of your life, some even say school reminds them of their youth. But what do you think of when you reminisce about your youth? Do you see school as a good thing or do you feel let down by your school?
The future depends on the intelligence of today's children and the only way we can ensure the next generation is not as shallow as some we witness these days, is to educate this generation that life is not about fun and what's in it for me and let's enjoy ourselves; life is beyond that.
For Nahida, education is not something to be viewed as a problem, but as part of the solution for breaking the cycle of conflict: "Educated people don't take guns," she said. "They don't destroy their country and their schools."
One of the rewards of helping to track global education over the past decade has been watching progress in getting more girls into school. But as we mark International Women's Day, I'm more conscious than ever that the glass is still not even half full: 31 million girls have never set foot inside a classroom, and half of them are unlikely ever to do so.
Dyslexia is characterised by difficultly reading, phonological (auditory) encoding problems, poor processing speed and the inability to use language skills effectively. It's also a reading disorder. Recent Professors from Durham and Yale University have suggested that Dyslexia is a Myth, that dyslexia should be abandoned as it lacks scientific clarity and educational value.
In all of my musical, equality and advisory roles, music continues to be a key tool in eradicating discrimination. In all our annual 'Educate and Celebrate' school showcases, students and teachers use music extensively through LGBT anthems, music by LGBT composers and equality songs written by our young people.
I've spoken at length about the importance of contextualised learning. As parents, we have a clear role to play in helping our children put theory into practice. It shouldn't fall solely on the shoulders of teachers. However, it still makes me question whether schools are doing enough on their side to prepare children for their futures.
Teachers work some of the longest hours of any profession with many working 50-60 hours a week. Our work is essential, our pay is not high, our pensions not gold-plated and we cannot be expected to work more hours than we already do. There comes a point when it is impossible to ignore what is happening.
Six episodes later, 16 months into teaching and although I'm still exhausted, I'm perpetually rewarded by the incredible students that I'm fortunate enough to teach and learn from. There are moments where students tell me to "go write a song about it in the bathroom", but on the whole, I'm happily rebranded as the Marilyn Gandhi-loving, red chino-donning, Inbetweener-impersonating, over-zealous, Scottish, eccentric teacher.
In Year 10, I didn't have one English teacher; I had six - a new supply teacher for each half term. I remember asking myself why it was that nobody wanted to stay at our school, but looking around me it wasn't that difficult to see why. Our school building was old and crumbling, we were oversubscribed, and classes were packed.
Michael Gove seems to like annoying people. His cocksure manner and breathtaking self-confidence means that he regularly comes into conflict with teachers, students, Lib Dems, his own deputy... pretty much the entire public.
If Michael Gove were just building some ghastly skyscrapers or running a sweatshop, we might not like it but would trust to time to show him the error of his ways. But he is experimenting - in his loose and lazy ways - with the minds of a generation. He needs to be stopped.
You have to believe that you can do it - you were chosen for this job, you have what it takes and you are learning more and more every day - so you have to carry that belief with you all the time. I'm not saying it's easy - in fact it's exhausting - but if you don't believe in you then how can you expect your students to?
An independent YouGov poll, released by environmental behaviour change charity Global Action Plan, shows that schools are not providing young people with the skills to secure employment in the fast growing 'green economy'...
Very few education secretaries are ever popular. And there's a very simple reason for this...Despite the fact that few - if any - education secretaries have actually been teachers, they seem to believe they know what's better for teachers and schools than the teachers themselves.