This is a sentiment I entirely agree with; it goes without saying doesn’t it? This came via an email which linked to the Conservatives web site “Building a Britain fit for the future,” which states
“Schools & Skills
We want every child to have the best possible start in life.”
Now what would your understanding of the word “every” be? Does it mean a few, some, a lot or all? My understanding is that “every” means “all“.
But if the Dept of Education has no figures on a specific group of children, whether the specific needs of those children within that group has any impact on their academic achievement, where teachers are not trained in those specific needs as part of their initial teacher training, where their particular handwriting needs are NON -statutory (for everyone else it is a Statutory requirement!), you might reasonably come to the conclusion that the word “every” has a different meaning! Maybe it should read “the majority”?
In case you are wondering, it is the group of left-handed children in our Education system I am talking about.
The attached letter from Rt Hon Damian Hinds MP Secretary of State states that “The Teachers Standards require teachers to adapt their teaching to address the needs of all their pupils, whatever those needs might be”. Again a fine sentiment but, in my opinion, it makes a huge and completely unfounded assumption; that is that teachers have been trained to help left-handed children, that they are aware of what to look out for and trained to act appropriately.
If that were the case, why were we encouraged by Nick Gibb MP to have input into the new Teacher Training Curriculum and why do schools ask me to run training courses for their staff? If all was fine and dandy in the classrooms for left-handed children, I wouldn’t need to be writing this!