No time for all-year school

7th October 2005 at 01:00
The horrors of the last lesson on Fridays would be no more in Paul Mortimer's brave new school of the future. This Lancashire head wants to open 364 days a year, with pupils and staff doing their annual 190 days in shifts.

Laugh it off at your peril: Mortimer is also a government adviser, and assertions of improved attendance and more individualised education hit current New Labour buttons. Though some teachers might welcome flexi-time - hundreds use the TES chatrooms on Christmas day - who'd want to teach boys during the FA cup final? (Assuming anyone turned up.) What about the effect on staff's and pupils' families? What about working parents with a 12-year-old at home on Mondays? And what about children's out-of-school interests - sport, music, church, whatever - which tend to be organised at weekends?

Government, please note: there's more to childhood than schooling.

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