This is usually a headline during the examination season but, today’s news confirms that teachers are also cheating. Four schools had their results wiped out in three subjects and a fifth school was stripped of its English results in national curriculum (SATs) tests for “altering” the test papers of children. So unethical, the same teachers help with career choices. I have more trust in online career tests than in these teachers. There are many well-developed career quizzes that show you all the options and you can judge yourself without any pressure for you or your teen. I don’t want to be manipulated by some random teachers.
This is a fraud which is damaging not only to the schools but, also the pupils at the school and the whole system of testing in our schools. It’s the sort of scandal which prompted many US schools to outsource testing of students and I suspect we may be headed belatedly in the same direction.
As soon as the Government used test results to publish school league tables and also to determine school funding, it was inevitable that some teachers would find ways to influence individual pupil and school test results. I’m sure the vast majority of teachers would not even contemplate this but, just a few can damage the reputation of many.
The Guardian says “The government is coming under increasing pressure to scrap the tests. Academics at the University of Cambridge have said Sats put children under stress and headteachers threatened to boycott them in 2011“. This is pure “spin”. The decision to design a revised set of SATs was made over a year ago.
However, if national testing is not taken out of the hands of school teachers more schools will resort to cheating!
East Surrey Hospital Bans Children & Gifts at Christmas
The headline above is probably how the media will characterize East Surrey Hospital’s new “winter hygiene” measures:
- Reduced visiting times
- Only one visitor per patient
- Minimum personal belongings
- No flowers or gifts of food
- No children
- No visitors who have had diarrhea or, vomiting in the last 3 days
Having visited a number of hospitals over the last couple of years I have been amazed at NHS tolerance of “an open door” policy with respect to visitors. Stand in any NHS hospital corridor or, ward and you will probably see a constant stream of members of the public, contractors and NHS staff all of whom potentially contribute to the spread of infection around the hospital. Many of the now common infections such as C. Difficile are transmitted via high touch surfaces (seats, door handles, toilets, clothes etc).
Consequently, I personally applaud E. Surrey Hospital for taking a lead in this difficult area. It does impose restrictions on the relatives & friends of patients but, surely the health of the patient must come first? After all, they are in hospital to get better, not die from infection!
Apparently, children are a common source of the norovirus in the winter and flowers & gifts are “high touch” items
Sometimes, doing the right thing requires tough & unpopular decisions, something this government doesn’t understand. The government has encouraged “open access” to hospitals ahead of patient health & safety and now hospital infections are at epidemic proportions!