Thoughts from a retired headteacher…

I reblog this with sadness. Sadness that a headteacher should feel motivated to write in this vein; sadness that the argument of this piece is essentially true. The keyword here is, I think, sadness.

Let Our Kids Be Kids

Teachers, headteachers, parents… use your power!

“I daily thank god that I am a retired teacher and headteacher. I simply could not ask my staff to persecute children with never ending ‘tests’ that do nothing to further any child’s education or ability to make sense of the world. I simply would have refused to cooperate with the idiots charged with designing our so-called education system.

Teaching used to be a joyous profession. Happy children, staff who didn’t dread walking daily through the school gates and heads who were left to manage their schools without the constant interference of people who couldn’t do the job themselves.

I used to be described as formidable by LEA officers, advisors alike. Yes I was. Formidable in my determination to do the very best I could for the young people in my charge.

Schools used to be about opportunities for social mobility- a chance…

View original post 118 more words


Tory vice chair deletes comment saying unemployed should have vasectomies

I reblog @ThomasPride ‘s blog without further comment.

Pride's Purge

Tory Britain:

The directors responsible for the Carillion bankruptcy should get MILLIONS in pay-offs:

Carillion fat cats still earning up to £55,000 a MONTH even after quitting

The workers made redundant by the Carillion bankruptcy should get VASECTOMIES:

Tory vice chair urged jobless to stop having kids or UK would ‘drown in wasters’

Yet more Tory eugenics …

View original post

The Letter David Gauke will not be expecting and won’t want to receive – blueannoyed

“Tired? A young man like you…?”

“I stopped explaining myself when I realised other people only understand from their level of perception.”

This is a very valid take on the quandary we face whenever someone who is not an acquaintance, relative or friend sees fit to pass comment on us.
In my case the condition is not M.E. – that is my little brother’s burden – but equally difficult to explain to someone who has not experienced my illness. Do we heed the call to arms; and risk appearing defensive, aggressive, apologetic, malingering or just plain pathetic? Or do we say nothing, slink away or tell ourselves that the better part of valour is discretion?
In my experience and life, for what it’s worth, it depends on the situation.

Choice, free will and the better part of valour are wonderful things: exercise yours, here, today, by reading the excellent piece I share today.
Please consider following the author, and please appreciate their work by liking it.

Me and M.E...

by Jonathan Fitzgerald

The pay machine in the car park is on the go-slow and I’m making small talk with the two pensioner ladies waiting in the queue behind me. “It’s a bit like me in a morning,” I quip. “A young man like you?” they chuckle back, unaware.

Now I’m not about to correct and start lecturing two octogenarian ladies in the middle of a car park. In fact initially I feel a little guilty – why am I moaning when they are the old people with the aches and creaking bones

And why would they know any different anyway? I’m having an OK-ish day and they can’t tell I have something like M.E based on our 30-second interaction. And I’ll never see them again, so does it matter? Should it really get to me?

Rewind two weeks and I’m in an exercise class, trying out different things to help my…

View original post 494 more words

The Council plans closures of Children’s Centres and Nurseries – Have your say at the consultation meetings

An opportunity for concerned parents, professionals and Council Tax payers in Birmingham to lend their voices to the children of Birmingham.
While the Council may have sparse room for manoeuvre, they can register the displeasure and dissatisfaction of the people of Birmingham.
It is true that children cannot vote; however, the adult population can, at parish, municipal, regional and national level; and in Birmingham there was elected a council opposed, in principle, to cuts of this nature that are being enforced by a divisive and hostile UK Government.
The Education, Health and Welfare provision of the United Kingdom only work when predicated on an understanding that the economy serves society, not the other way round.

Birmingham Against The Cuts

They say:

The way that we deliver children’s centres, health visiting services and parenting support services in Birmingham is changing. Have your say on our proposals for a new service model that will bring these services together, for you, in your local area.

View original post 363 more words

I am SICK of raving right-wingers, UKIPers and racists stealing OUR flag. Let’s take it back.

I am in agreement. It must be said that for every right wing motivated agitator there is a greater number of those folk who don’t really know what they believe and have no persisting beliefs; more thoughtless than narrow minded, though they may well be both. The real villains are those who stir up the passions of the folk who said yesterday they had no interest in politics, who today espouse Brexit and tomorrow, well who knows, maybe calling for public sector workers to receive a pay rise?

Pride's Purge

Every time I see a social media profile with a Union flag, I prepare myself for foaming right-wing racist bile – usually from some narrow-minded, hard-Brexiter UKIP or EDL supporter.

It makes me angry that our national flag – my flag – has been appropriated by these intolerant, ignorant people who think they are representative of our country.

Because they’re not.

You don’t have to be racist, pro-UKIP or a raving loony right-winger to care about our country. We – who are tolerant and open to the rest of the world and other cultures – are just as patriotic as they are.

In fact, we’re MORE patriotic.

Because we’re not trying to destroy our country’s economy for the sake of “taking back control” or other mindless, meaningless slogans.

And we’re not trying to make a quick buck by selling off our NHS to foreign owners.

And we’re not pushing…

View original post 458 more words

We need to talk about Diane Abbott. Now. (EXPLICIT CONTENT)

Diane Abbott has been a topic of talk, chatter, discussion, criticism – mostly unfair – and, most recently, speculation.
I am very pleased to share this excellent, thoughtful perspective on the subject of Ms Abbott, her story and why she is deserving of respect.



This is not a recipe. I wrote this as a series of tweets today and readers asked for it as a blog post, so here it is. Our politics may differ, so feel free to skip straight back to the recipes if that’s what you’re here for.


Right one of us political writer people needs to do this and it looks like it’s me. Grab a seat. I wanna talk about Diane.
Diane was first elected as an MP in 1987, the year before I was born. She has been dedicated to serving the British public for longer than I have even been alive. Hold that thought. Understand it.
Diane was the first black woman to have a seat in the House of Commons. She MADE HISTORY. Her father was welder, her mother a nurse. How many working class kids do we have…

View original post 1,106 more words