Exams czar cracks whip at SQA
An "exams czar" was appointed this week to act as Education Minister Jack McConnell's eyes and ears for this year's exams. Colin MacLean, the highly-regarded civil servant who was formerly depute senior chief inspector of schools, is being seconded from the Scottish Executive as national co-ordinator. Ministerial nervousness about this year's exams is evident: the co-ordinator's first job will be to ensure there are enough markers.
Jurassic Park councils slammed
A shot across the bows of the Scottish Executive and school management was delivered by the president of the Scottish Secondary Teachers' Association. Bill Fitzpatrick said that post-McCrone there was a general assumption that teachers can be told to do anything in return for the "largesse" of a 23 per cent salary increase.
Motorola shadow over careers study
The Scottish Executive confirmed that its review of how schools prepare pupils for work would get underway this summer. The move came ironically a day after Motorola said it was shutting its Bathgate plant with the loss of 3,100 jobs. Even more ironically, Motorola established an awards scheme last year to encourage excellence by schools in education for work and enterprise.
`Drillie days' for Jordanhill campus
Pre-service training in PE is to return to Strathclyde University's Jordanhill campus. The revival will stir nostalgia in male PE teachers over 40 who went through their "drillie" days at Jordanhill - before it lost its 55-year-old training status in the late 1980s to Edinburgh's Moray House Cramond. Training will be limited to graduates who want to become PE teachers and use the university's "sports-related degrees".
Prophet or cheeky chappie?
Teachers are dropping the biblical Joseph in favour of the gospel according to Andrew Lloyd Webber, says Exeter University's Terence Copley. In the journal Education Today, he writes that pupils are being shown videos of Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat and "in the same way, David and Goliath might be reduced to a moral story about bullying . Far from constituting RE, such an approach could be said to be anti- RE".