Children's champs look like chumps

4th February 2005 at 00:00
The great unwritten rule of show business is never work with children or animals. But should we turn that advice on its head? "Children and animals, never work with adults in show business."

Whichever way round it is, the conference of Confed, the senior education officers' association, decided to ignore all wisdom and focus discussions last week on what they could do to really listen to teenagers or, as they put it, be "Champions of Children".

Close attention (or was it condescension?) was paid to the two teenagers from Lewisham on the panel. At the end, Hampshire's chief education officer Andrew Seber elaborately praised the contributions of "Stephanie", a 16-year-old speaker from Crossways academy.

Eventually, it got too much for the youngster. "Actually, my name's Sapphire," she corrected. Her full name is Sapphire-Joy Moore-Findlay, surely unforgettable even for a chief education officer.

Later on, asked to sum up the conference Liam Webber, 16, of Forest Hill school, broke the ice. "I thought it was quite I erm I long," he told the education directors. "I kept drifting off... Then I looked round and saw a couple of adults drifting off as well."

Subscribe to get access to the content on this page.

If you are already a Tes/ Tes Scotland subscriber please log in with your username or email address to get full access to our back issues, CPD library and membership plus page.

Not a subscriber? Find out more about our subscription offers.
Subscribe now
Existing subscriber?
Enter subscription number


The guide by your side – ensuring you are always up to date with the latest in education.

Get Tes magazine online and delivered to your door. Stay up to date with the latest research, teacher innovation and insight, plus classroom tips and techniques with a Tes magazine subscription.
With a Tes magazine subscription you get exclusive access to our CPD library. Including our New Teachers’ special for NQTS, Ed Tech, How to Get a Job, Trip Planner, Ed Biz Special and all Tes back issues.

Subscribe now