So, a lengthier and more explanatory post will be forthcoming soon enough but those little scamps at my local paper beat me to the punch. After years of moaning I decided it was time to put up or shut up, whilst I have no especial faith in my putting up abilities I have even less in my shutting up ones. So, it has come to this – a colleague and I (he much wiser than me) have decided to go for it and start a free school, or rather decided to submit a proposal for one, which is altogether different.
I thought it would be good form and politic to get buy in from the town council so I asked around and they told on me to the LEA who said they definitely didn’t want one and wouldn’t support it and then the town council despite making positive grunts in my initial conversations decided they too wouldn’t support it without even inviting us in to discuss it. So we’re off to a flying start. Anyway rather than lead you by the nose and try and co-opt opinion to my side, you read the following and see what you think.
I won’t get into it all now but suffice to say careers, work preparedness and producing a more holistic IB style of curriculum will be at the heart of our proposal, leaning into STEAM and forging deeper and more meaningful links with business. We will be adopting the Thayer method of teaching, longer schools days to allow for regular exercise and help parents, split shifts for teachers so they can do the school run occasionally or get home at a reasonable hour. All sorts of exciting innovations that we feel can make a difference not just to the students but to the parents, the staff and ultimately the community. So you can understand why the town council would be reluctant to do something like that…
I would have directed you to the comments section where the witless Mailman 1 decried my colleague and I as ‘cranks’ from a geographical locale that I’ve never heard of, with such emphatic fervour I began to think perhaps I was a crank. He has however now removed it, a change of heart presumably brought about when he recognised after much soul searching that he had no idea who either of us were and that we weren’t from the place he stated. He did however find the idea of educating young people so thoroughly prosaic that he felt duty bound to remark ‘YAWN’ to the delight of 0 other people. Good. It’s precisely that kind of incisive debate, the thrust and parry of competing ideologies that promote meaningful dialogue thus helping move the argument on, that helped me make the decision to do this in the first place.