Thursday, 17 October 2013

Gummer and Gove- new best mates?

As many may know and sure to understand, I am not the greatest fan of Ben Gummer, our Ipswich MP. But one action I will credit him for, his is almost weekly visit to a school in Ipswich, I know he has visited the school I am involved in- Sidegate Primary and was at my local High School- Northgate- on Monday.

I am also sure that at every school he has attended, the majority of teachers and staff he has spoken to have been critical of the measures that Mr Gove is bringing in.

There is no doubt that education needs both improving and changing, but that will not be possible unless you take the teachers with you- as we see more industrial un rest in our schools, low morale and staff leaving the profession - it is obvious that Gove is not gaining the support of the teachers who have to implement these changes.

So will Mr Gummer tell his new boss - his plans are not working? Have a feeling the answer will be no. Will be interesting to see if Ben Gummer continues with his weekly visits.

Mr Gummer also mentioned that Education now has a number of East Anglian MP's in the Department- strange when Norfolk and Suffolk are two of poorest counties when it comes to education our young people, with a report this week highlighting the poor attendance record at Suffolk schools.

If Mr Gummer continues his visits, and when teachers mentioned to failing OFSTED inspections - they will now expect a detailed response and not 'I will take it up with the Minister'.

Suffolk schools need as many friends and allies in the Education Departments as they can get, lets hope Mr Gummer can now help deliver the improvements that are needed. First thing Mr Gummer needs to tell his new mate Mr Gove is - you have not yet persuaded teachers that you are right and without their support your plans are doomed to fail and it will yet again be the pupils who will suffer.

I will expect the usual Tory blogs to attack me as I work in Private Education - but I am also a Governor at the largest Primary School in Suffolk and my daughter is currently training to be a teacher.

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