SHAMELESS

Given the shocking mess that Labour made of our Education system, one would think they are in no position to carp about efforts being made by this Coalition government to try and improve things.  But of course that is not the case, Labour has no shame. The BBC has been pushing the Labour line on the news that more “Free Schools” are opening this morning and I heard one BBC correspondent talk about the “waste” that accompanied some of these new Free Schools. (Bradford was singled out) Funny how the BBC NEVER talks about the enormous waste that characterises the bloated State sector schools. It never talks of the staggering inefficiencies, the inept teaching, the lack of discipline or indeed the grotesque social engineering that Labour helped build up within our Schools. Just shameless, BBC.

SUTTON TRUST

Amazing amount of favourable publicity afforded to the Sutton Trust’s latest report on the Today programme this morning. Also used as an opportunity to mock Michael Gove. Yet isn’t the Sutton Trust a reliably left wing organisation? Why DOES the BBC get so excited about it’s press releases? Is it because any opportunity to somehow “do down” Gove is grabbed with relish? If our children really ARE lagging so far behind overseas students, perhaps the BBC might choose to square that with their adulation of the teaching “profession” and the NUT? Maybe this is evidence we need to sack poor teachers? Oddly, the BBC never goes down that line, for some reason.

BBC claims ‘economic downturn’ will cause more attacks on teachers by pupils

On Saturday a number of national and regional media outlets reported the story of 10-year-old boy attacking two female teachers at his school ‘in Avalon Road, Orpington’. It resulted in both teachers being taken to hospital – one with a broken leg and dislocated kneecap and the other bearing facial injuries.

None of the outlets went into any more detail, not even the name of the school or its background. Instead the Autonomous Mind blog was left with an exclusive about the school, Burwood School, an establishment for boys with special educational needs that has a number of troubled and previously excluded youngsters on its small roll. No other media sought out and reported these details.

Some hours later the details carried on Autonomous Mind, including the elements of the 2011 Ofsted report cited in the blog post, were picked up by BBC London who despatched Paul Curran to the previously un-named school to deliver the details in a BBC London news report.

But being the BBC, the report just had to include a different slant that furthered a favoured and seemingly unrelated pet narrative. This saw Curran lead in to a televised quote by a teaching union official from an un-named union, who himself was also un-named, by saying:

One teaching union expects the situation to get worse because of the economic downturn.

But can you spot any mention of the economic downturn in the official’s broadcast assessment of attacks on teachers by their pupils, quoted in its entirety below?

In today’s society, where lives are difficult, stressful, often chaotic, it’s no wonder that very occasionally children go completely off the rails.

There could be any number of causes for lives being difficult, stressful or chaotic. But the BBC has decided the cause of an increase in attacks on teachers will be as a result of the economic downturn.

This isn’t factual news reporting, it is opportunist speculation mixed with personal opinion, pushed on viewers without any supporting evidence whatsoever. And it deliberately ignores the particular circumstances of the incident at Burwood School given the challenging nature of the school’s troubled pupils.

It has no place on a publicly funded service broadcaster, but it happens over and over again.

UNDERMINING EDUCATION POLICY

During the Labour years,our universities were turned into third rate academic factories as more and more young people were lured into participating in the chase for next to useless degrees. Sensibly, the Coalition has tried to tackle this problem and this was always going to provoke the ire of the BBC. On Today, 7.50am  the BBC does everything possible to get the head of UCAS to criticise government policy. The BBC idea is that there should be no cap to the numbers going to Uni, The UCAS lady does very well by maintaining her professional neutrality – something the rancid BBC could learn to do rather better.

KEEPING THE FLOODGATES OPEN

Any attempt by Cameron to tackle the relentless abuse of the UK education system by those claiming to be foreign students coming from outside the EU (From Pakistan, for example) was always going to annoy the BBC. So on Today, at 8.35am on comes the oleaginous Keith Vaz to tell us about the “enormous damage” any attempt to staunch th is unwelcome and dangerous inward flow will have on our Universities. Naturally, there was no one to counter his claims.

THE GREAT TEACHING SCAM, COVERED UP

Not often Ofsted comes up with anything useful but today it reveals that half a million children in England alone have been wrongly diagnosed with “special needs”. This instantly raises questions about the professionalism of some teachers and the approach of some schools. Now, this is a problem for the BBC which slavishly promotes the teaching “profession” so how to deal with it? Check out this prime-time 8.10am discussion. The BBC sets it up as if it is between someone in favour of the Ofsted view and someone against it. But, as you would expect, nothing could be further from the truth.  Jon Bangs from the NUT is introduced as if he is in favour of the report but he instantly starts wailing about how tough things are for teachers, how they need more resource and more training – unbelievable. Then, Headteacher Jo Shuter drones on about “barriers to learning” – listen to her evade Humphrys questions. Her arrogance and liberal leanings are obvious and there is NO voice to counter her.

THE GREAT EDUCATION CON..

The BBC likes to play along with the nonsense that the “A” level has not been dumbed down. So today as even more students get Grade “A” the BBC changes the narrative to being one about the availability of university places. Naturally Labour play along with this and and thus the context of the debate changes in a way that favours the radical egalitarians. Let’s ignore the emasculation of what was once a gold standard education qualification and instead have a faux debate about how many more can be funnelled into University.

GOING DOWN THE PUB?

I suppose it is one of those “silly season” stories that all the media loves but it was given quite a positive hearing on the PM programme this evening and I had to stop and double check to hearing that I was really hearing the proposition that….pubs should be opened to children for lunch…. as a way of fighting the recession. Eddie Mair seemed quite taken by Prue Leith’s lunacy.

CHRIS WOODHEAD

I have always admired the views put forward by former head of Ofsted Chris Woodhead. Along with Melanie Phillips, Chris has argued eloquently with detailed knowledge against the folly of the radical egalitarianism pursued by this wicked government. Chris has appeared on the BBC from time to time and usually got a hard time for his bother but he has always been a voice of sanity in the BBC’s bubbling quagmire of education leftism. So, I was very sorry to read that he is suffering from Motor Neurone Disease and has even contemplated taking his own life rather than endure the final stages of this awful disease. I hope you may share a thought, or even a prayer, for Mr Woodhead – it’s a tragic prospect he faces and as one of the good guys who argued back against the BBC narrative, this is indeed sad news.

LESSONS IN PROPAGANDA

BBC can always be relied upon to give the appropriately entitled NUT conference favourable coverage. The Keffiyeh adorned hordes that turn up for this annual circus are now complaining that the government plan to extend “free” nursery care are actually reducing the care children get. How? Well, it seems that some teachers work loads are being increased as a consequence of this policy. Oh dear – that would never do, would it? Perhaps another strike looms – with attendant favourable Beeb coverage?

BBC SURVEY SHOWS POPE IS CATHOLIC!

Hi all – been away for a few days and just back in time to catch the screaming headline from the BBC that…. a BBC survey shows that Universities would like to be able to charge students more in tuition fees. In what way is this news beyond the stating of the bleeding obvious? I would be surprised if any University refused the chance for a higher income stream! What would be interesting would be a BBC survey to show us how well the crop of graduates under Labour have been faring in the job market with their shiny bright new degrees from our State backed universities. Then again the Education debate is always framed in a particular way, isn’t it, with radical egalitarianism at the heart of all the BBC offer us up on this topic.

THE SAME TODAY AS TOMORROW.

My but wasn’t the Today programme in cracking form this morning? Did you catch the class warrior Martin Narey from poverty-industry giant Barnardos declaring that “investment” in Education has helped mostly the middle-classes whilst the “poor” have seen little benefit. Yes, right-on, Comrade and pass the sick-bucket. This then segued into a report featuring a Gazan doctor and the death of hundreds of babies at the hands of those evil Israelis. The question was asked of the not so good doctor where the greatest risk to babies in Gaza comes from, the answer, Hamas, was never even considered! Next, Prince Harry and that alleged “racist” comment three years ago. The oleaginous Keith Vaz was given time to slime on and give his opinion. The BBC loves nothing better than attacking a Royal and this non-story, spun by the circulation-deprived News of the World, is perfect for the BBC since it allows them to set the attack dogs on the Royal Family but using the veneer of “racism.”

LESSONS IN DISCLOSURE.

I noticed the BBC has given great prominence to the report by the Institute for Public Policy Research claiming that training days for England’s teachers should be quadrupled to 20 a year, costing £75m. The Institute for Public Policy Research says the difference between excellent and bad teachers means pupils achieve more than a GCSE grade extra. However the IPPR is not just any old think-tank – it is a LEFT WING think tank which has acted as cheerleader for Labour’s more controversial policies, including road pricing, rubbish taxes, ID cards and justifying hospital closures. It has also been the recipient of over £1 million of lucrative grants from Labour. So when the BBC reports the latest IPPR advocacy I think it has a duty to put the character of the IPPR in context so that we realise that what we are actually hearing is government thinking – a lit like the BBC itself I guess.