The TESS archive - 6 November 1981

4th November 2011 at 00:00
The month the Iran-Contra scandal erupted after US President Ronald Reagan authorised the CIA to recruit and support Contra rebels in Nicaragua, and slavery was abolished in Mauritania

STUC education debate short on practical answers

"How the hell do we do it, Jimmy?" seemed an appropriate question put to Mr Jimmy Reid, former Upper Clyde Shipbuilders leader and now ubiquitous politician, writer, journalist and broadcaster. It came during an STUC conference on promoting the right to learn from cradle to grave for all citizens. Mr Reid had delivered an impassioned address long on evangelism but short on strategy.

Parental interest is lacking in subject choice

Deciding pupils' subject choices at the end of the second year of secondary discriminates against those whose parents take little or no interest. The choice offered overstresses certain subjects such as modern languages at the expense of others such as technical subjects. Mr Harry Ashmall, rector of Morrison's Academy, Crieff, makes these criticisms following a study he undertook among 247 pupils in Forfar Academy, his former school.

Belt report stresses role of heads in abolition

Heads are the key figures in any orderly phasing out of the belt in Scottish secondary schools, concludes the report of the inquiry by the Scottish Council for Research in Education. Another requirement for abolition is that teachers must be encouraged to see that regular reporting of indiscipline in classes will not be regarded as a reflection of professional failure.

The Bunter touch

Obese pupils have higher IQs than their thinner fellow pupils, according to American research. The obesity-intelligence link was an unexpected result of tests given to 20,137 children in a study aimed at discovering the cause of cerebral palsy. The researchers found that obese children had IQs averaging 10 points higher than lean children at age four.

Dismay over enlarged alphabet

Japan's Education Ministry has created controversy by adding 95 characters to the complicated Japanese alphabet taught to all pupils. This will bring the total number of ideographs to 1,945, and adds greatly to an already heavy burden imposed on Japanese pupils.

Log-in as an existing print or digital subscriber

Forgotten your subscriber ID?


To access this content and the full TES archive, subscribe now.

View subscriber offers


Get TES online and delivered to your door – for less than the price of a coffee

Save 33% off the cover price with this great subscription offer. Every copy delivered to your door by first-class post, plus full access to TES online and the TES app for just £1.90 per week.
Subscribers also enjoy a range of fantastic offers and benefits worth over £270:

  • Discounts off TES Institute courses
  • Access over 200,000 articles in the TES online archive
  • Free Tastecard membership worth £79.99
  • Discounts with Zipcar,, Virgin Wines and other partners
Order your low-cost subscription today