Trivial superficial glitz is no answer

3rd July 1998 at 01:00
I was confused at first- I thought I'd lost a couple of months somewhere. Careful checking, however, showed that it really was June and not early April. I'm still not entirely convinced that the report in The TES (June 19) about the plan for televised 'Oscars' for teachers wasn't a mistimed April Fool's joke. It has all the hallmarks of the ludicrous intended to dupe the gullible.

Can it really be true that in response to the enormous problems facing teaching, the experts and pundits have hit on this answer: reduce teaching to the trivial levels of glitz and superficiality which characterise the film and pop music world?

There are to be 15 categories of awards. But might I suggest a few others in keeping with the merit of the proposal?

How about a "Teacher with the Most Red Pens" category; then there's the "Best Supporting Teacher"; and perhaps a "Teacher who Juggles, Sings and Tap Dances best while Wrestling with the National Curriculum and an Unruly Class as the Rain pours through the Ceiling" award?

If the proposal for teaching Oscars is not a joke to wind us up, it may have one good point. There isn't too much for classroom practitioners to smile about these days, so maybe the prospect of such nonsense on stilts will give us all a well-deserved laugh!

Keith Barker. 89 Windsor Road. Carlton-in-Lindrick. Worksop, Notts

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