I know I'm a grumpy old sod and that there are many, many things that really get on my nerves or bug me in ways you cannot comprehend but one that is really up there is teachers, who we must remember are huge influences on our young children's minds, that have a poor grasp of grammar, bad enunciation and a poor grasp of the English language.
New research has found that two-thirds of primary school children aren't reaching basic fitness levels for their age group - an awful statistic. Child obesity rates are soaring as a result and this can easily be linked to the decline of sport and exercise. With the emphasis on creating a generation of test-passers and box-tickers, exercise and sport are being neglected in schools.
Now in my fourth year of a part time PhD I am attempting to tell the stories of stressed, anxious and depressed teachers in a different way and carry on the conversation. If you are reading this and would like to tell me your story for this project then please let me know. And if you are out there, in distress, talk to someone.
Now, I have a sneaking suspicion that what I have done is state the glaringly obvious for people who have been teaching for a long time, and I apologise if that is the case. I'm new to teaching, however, and I'm pretty horrified. It's a job I want to do, I see it as more of a vocation, and I've been told I'm very good at it, 'outstanding', in fact.
Record numbers of students are attending university this year and young people choosing to further their education is something that I'm hugely in favour of. What I can't support, however, is a free for all in universities which simply don't have the infrastructure to deal with the rising numbers, but who are happy to benefit financially from them...
Everyone picks up bad habits in life as well as driving, it's inevitable, but when you have children it's important to make sure you're not making glaring mistakes on a regular basis. I suppose that what many people need to realise is that if for instance your child grows up watching you on your phone in the car then they'll believe that it is safe behaviour.
Sir Michael Wilshaw, head of Ofsted, said recently that private schools should be stripped of their charitable status for failing to sponsor academies and struggling state schools in poor areas. Through my personal experience of the private education system and my current work to provide academies with cost effective extra-curricular programs, I couldn't agree with him more.
The government is launching a new campaign this week to encourage better reading among the young: "Read On. Get On". Based on a report that links the inability to "read well" with potential joblessness later in life, it's the latest of many articles and reports bemoaning a decline in traditional reading skills among young people.