Christmas question time

Have you been paying attention in class? Michael Shaw tests your knowledge of this year's education trivia


1. Who axed the headless?

2. What did a ban on holding hands and "canoodling" lead to at Highworth Warneford comprehensive in Swindon?

3. Who buried archaeology?

4. Which politician admitted he had bunked off school for the "nefarious purpose of playing snooker"?

5. Why were millions intrigued by the merger of Summerdown school and Wattkins comprehensive?

6. What did George W Bush have in common with teachers' union leaders Chris Keates and Steve Sinnott?

7. What was described by one tabloid as a plan to turn all schools into Harry Potter's Hogwarts?

8. Who moaned that the modern education system made under-qualified youngsters believe they could become "pop stars, judges, TV presenters or heads of state"?

9. Which of the following did Conservatives announce they would revive: a) O-levels b) grammar schools or c) the cane?

10. What did Women's Institute members, caretakers and sacked civil servants have in common?

11. How many forms need to be filled in simply so children can go pond-dipping on school trips, according to the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds?

a) 3 b) 9 c) 16

12. What was described as an ugly conifer tree by an academic, a shiny sweet wrapper by the Liberal Democrats, and the end of the gold standard by newspapers?

13. Why could pupils be seen wandering around wearing blue wrist-bands?

14. Why did teachers at Nelson Tomlinson school in Cumbria nickname one of their classrooms "the goldfish bowl"?

15. How few marks did you need to get for an A grade in two maths papers produced by Edexcel?

a) 50 per cent b) 45 per cent or c) 40 per cent

16. What fate befell the spin doctor who coined the phrase "education, education, education"?

17. Which sold-out show at the Edinburgh festival could have been rated satisfactory or better by inspectors?

18. Whose qualifications to teach maths did not add up?

19. Which minister had the guts (or stupidity) to say that Charles Clarke had "gone soft"?

20. Why did private school Christ's Hospital take on a teacher who claimed to have slept with 4,600 women?


1. The Teacher Training Agency, which dropped its "Use Your Head, Teach" adverts showing headless workers.

2. More than 200 pupils marched out of the school in protest.

3. Exam courses in the subject were ditched by the Assessment and Qualifications Alliance.

4. Michael Howard, Tory party leader.

5. It was the plot for the latest series of Channel 4's Teachers.

6. They all won elections. Sinnott and Keates became general secretaries of the National Union of Teachers and National Association of Schoolmasters Union of Women Teachers, respectively.

7. The Department for Education and Skills' five-year strategy which included the recommendation that secondary schools should have uniforms and house systems.

8. Prince Charles

9. a b

10. Government seminars and documents suggested all three should be brought into school to help cover workload.

11. c

12. Tomlinson report on 14-19 education.

13. To mark anti-bullying week

14 Because a two-way mirror was installed.

15. b

16. Peter Hyman began work as a classroom assistant at Islington Green school in north London.

17. Ofsted! - the musical.

18. Tristram Jones-Parry, the headteacher of Westminster, who had difficulty getting work in state schools.

19. David Blunkett, former home secretary.

20. The school employed Gene Simmons, singer with Seventies band Kiss, for the TV series Rock School.

More quizzes: LEADERSHIP 17 who wrote 35

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