The ISE-man cometh

17th March 2006 at 00:00
Scottish education has a new acronym. Oh no, we hear you groan. Oh yes. If you hear anyone talking about the "ISE" report, you should quickly realise - to show how up-to-date you are - that they are talking about the Improving Scottish Education state of the nation resume from HMIE.

At the recent launch, we learn, Graham Donaldson, the chief of chiefs, reflected on the fact that it was taking place at Hampden rather than Murrayfield. Did this mean his subliminal message was that "things could only get better"? He quickly discounted that one, not because of the new Labour overtones, but because it did not reflect the report.

Rather, Donaldson told a capacity audience, the venue was a simple piece of self-indulgence on his part as he had spent a fair amount of his youth at Hampden as a supporter of Queen's Park. So he's not used to crowds then.

Indeed, Donaldson remarked, inspectors would have had to hold the event on the pitch if all who applied to attend were to have been accommodated.

Then, he said, he might have felt like giving a Rod Stewart-type performance.

Hold that thought.

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