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Uk Education!

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Uk Education!

Old 1st Jul 2011, 22:54
  #41 (permalink)  
Join Date: May 2001
Location: Newcastle/UK
Posts: 1,476
Colon? that's part of yer Bum plumbing int it?
tony draper is offline  
Old 1st Jul 2011, 23:13
  #42 (permalink)  
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And then as our friend draper is willing to demonstrate... we have the problem of regional 'accents' whereby anyone living more than 30 miles away has problems de-ciphering what's being said.. here in the US I notice that the moment anyone from the UK is interviewed and speaks with a nothern accent they adopt subtitles... quite right too.. helps me enormously as I grew up in the south of England... and that's not the 'saaf' as in essex...

Last edited by MungoP; 2nd Jul 2011 at 00:30.
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Old 2nd Jul 2011, 03:15
  #43 (permalink)  
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Location: Kelowna Wine Country
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Usually it is the old codgers who complain so much, but I'd be interested to see what those old codgers would make of the work Grade 12s (last year) school kids are doing.

A few years ago I sent my daughter back to the UK to do a year at my old school. She sent me her practice Math A level paper so I could help. I didn't even understand the questions , let alone have the smallest clue how to get to the answers. I got 90s in my Math papers!

I appreciate the problem with spelling, grammar etc but guys, unless you can get 4 A levels in today's academia you are not really qualified to complain.

As for the captains of industry, you don't think they have an axe to grind? We have been hearing the same old violins since before I left school, 1962, and probably before that.
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Old 2nd Jul 2011, 09:12
  #44 (permalink)  
Thought police antagonist
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" As for the captains of industry, you don't think they have an axe to grind? We have been hearing the same old violins since before I left school, 1962, and probably before that"

Whilst I share your views above, and am no fan of the constant whinge mode selected by said captains, I have to say that at times they do have a valid point. I encounter the products of the UK education system ( said system having been well and truly "modified" by Govt's various over the years ) and most have an, on the surface, impressive range of paper qualifications.

However....take the fabled "A" level maths standard...when asked to divide 980 /12 by either mental arithmetic or on paper....forget it !..they invariably can't...others have read a book....cough !...by virtue of watching a film ! ( The Shawshanke Redemption seems quite popular in this respect )...War and Peace is a complete unknown however.

The concept of learning, to remember and then implement, is also new to them. "Q and A" sessions / recaps also seem novel, intially, although several do admit they prove invaluable...eventually.

As an aside, how many times have people on here for example, payed for goods and the till has failed to produce the change required balance leaving the cashier to work out this balance..and being unable to do so.

So called progressive education techniques and methodologies are fine, in theory ( and I accept fully that education, like technology / communication formats, the English language...just about every area of life in fact, is an evolving medium ) but the glaring failing to instil the basics of both subjects and the philosophy of learning is more than self evident I have to say
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Old 2nd Jul 2011, 09:31
  #45 (permalink)  
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a very valid point KnC, also when successive government impliment new policies, it invariably leads to constant changes and adjustments of the curriculum in use at the time providing a constant turnout of pupils that have a varying base of levels and standards.
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Old 2nd Jul 2011, 09:46
  #46 (permalink)  
EstŠ servira para distraerle.
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Now why should government policies on education keep changing unless these idealogies are constantly being subjected to the political chaos that characterises socialism? And if that is not the case then surely such a heaving morass of shape shifting chaos can only be either because the standards of pupils are deteriorating or because the teachers are failing their pupils?
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Old 2nd Jul 2011, 11:10
  #47 (permalink)  
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Alas, cheetah, it seems the finer points of history have escaped you regarding your OCD with socialism.

The Origins of Educational Reform

You are required to scroll down this page until you find the relevant paragraphs which you will then assimilate fully. For your guidance, these concern the Thatcher Govt's policies and then the subsequent Nu Labour policies...please note which came first.

Due to your inability to grasp basic historical fundamentals, you will see the Headmistress at the end of class today.
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Old 2nd Jul 2011, 22:46
  #48 (permalink)  
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Location: Kelowna Wine Country
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See the headmistress eh? Ooooo- er Mrs, Iím up for that!

I have no quarrel with opinions of the stupid, arrogant and misguided people who have introduced new curricula and ímoderní teaching over the last fifty years, however the world does move on and surely our children need to know a lot of stuff that hadnít even been discovered when I was at school. While you may see education as a fixed chunk of learning to be absorbed others see it as a growing and organic thing that must learn and adapt to the world that is advancing at an increasingly fast rate.

I live in a tourist town where 90% of locals have made a lifestyle decision and moved here, they are, by and large, a very easy demographic for educators to show high achievement. Perhaps not coincidentally our secondary school results are way above the provincial average in a province that is at the top or second in the country in Canada which is rated second only to Finland for education in the OECD countries. And yet this week there were articles in the local paper outlining two different plans to bring private education to our valley because of parent discontent with our results!

I have no doubt that the education provided in our secondary school is capable of sending 90% of our students to university (as opposed to the 50% it does now.) I am convinced that the difference is largely in the individual studentís motivation, family and parent support and lastly in our schoolís ability to grab and retain the engagement of those students who find the mountains, cars, hormones and especially the multitude of entertainment distractions more interesting than academic study. In spite of these distractions our school has sent five of my children, all who attended it, to university.

As a school trustee I know we could do more, and we are working on it. I am continually frustrated by the slow progress, bureaucratic inertia, the need to win over staff rather than just tell them what weíd like them to do and the disconnect or plain ignorance of so many parents. In those subcultures where education is highly prized schools are regularly providing a university ready education for 90% of their students, and yet there is still the odd one who can do little more than spell their own name. How can that happen?

Regarding spelling etc. You may recall that until relatively recently traditional English spelling was Ďflexible,í I am not sure exactly when we got taken up by the exactitude we like today, probably those damned Victorians. I remember seeing documents from the eighteen hundreds and there was still a measure of variation in spelling then.

Just thinking out loud.
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Old 3rd Jul 2011, 09:46
  #49 (permalink)  
Join Date: Apr 2008
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and yet there is still the odd one who can do little more than spell their own name. How can that happen?
Could it be because Mother Nature in her infinite wisdom supplies a wide spectrum of academic ability? If a population contains "90% university ready students", then either that particular population is for some demographic reason non-typical of the average, or the university system has been seriously dumbed down to accommodate such a huge majority.

If the latter, then we have the situation where many of the degrees are not worth the paper they are written on, and practically everyone has a warm (but utterly false) sense that they are doing very well. If that is what society wants, so be it, but don't complain if you are operated on by an incompetent surgeon, your legal affairs are messed up by a semi-literate lawyer, and so on. A university should remain a centre of excellence, turning out graduates able to maintain the highest standards of which humankind is capable, and this has never been the province of those who need the soft options to get their pieces of paper.
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Old 3rd Jul 2011, 14:49
  #50 (permalink)  

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I don't think the university system has been dumbed down at all, at least not in the more traditional subjects. The problem is the availability of many more 'soft handed' subjects at universities now. Subjects that don't require a great deal of intelligence or academic ability to achieve highly in or to be accepted onto. This is why we have so many half wit graduates.

Regarding the more traditional subjects such as maths, science, medicine and engineering, the UK always has been and remains a world centre of excellence. There are people who come from all over the world to study in UK universities. I'm a graduate in Pharmaceutical Chemistry myself (2006) and I can tell you the course wasn't easy or soft handed in any way. Those who couldn't hack it were simply kicked off, ensuring that only those with the capability of graduating remained. I can also tell you that if one were submit an essay or assignment full of grammatical/spelling errors it would be thrown straight back in your face and you would be told to sort it out.

On the subject of school education, the problem I have with this thread is the title, UK education, it's far too general and tars everywhere with the same brush. Education standards vary greatly from place to place in the UK and even from school to school. The Scottish, English and NI education systems are completely different at school level.

Those who can achieve in life usually will.
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