Fairness...

17 Dec 2019

Fairness is a characteristic that we would all like to have mentioned in our obituary. It is surely an attribute to which we all aspire.

 

So post election, whether our aspirations have been met or not, the make up of the government is not an accurate reflection of the population’s wishes. In fact the large Tory majority has come about with Boris Johnson securing only 1.2 percentage points more than Theresa May in 2017.

 

Proportional Representation won’t even be discussed during the next five years, and if it were, those opposed would cite the recent inability of Parliament to compromise. A spurious excuse because coalition needs mature informed discussion before being set up; consider the Tory/Liberal Democrat coalition of 2010 generally recognised to have been a workable and, possibly, a successful government overall.

 

An almost unique situation within Europe. Of the 43 countries most often considered to be within Europe, 40 use some form of proportional representation to elect their MPs’. The UK stands almost alone in Europe in using a ‘one-person-takes-all’ disproportionate voting system. France is the only other European country to use a ‘one-person-takes-all’ system. (Electoral Reform Society)

 

So how much Fairness can we expect to see over the next five years? Already the enormity of the cost of the election promises is being highlighted in the context of establishing trade outside of Europe. I fear an emphasis on high profile flashy projects, especially in the north, the encouragement of new free schools and much PR on the success around a few high achieving pupils. It is sad fact that the gap between the able and less able grows during our school years, what a sad reflection of our school system. (Educational Endowment Foundation)

 

Those of us in the sector know that we need to respect teachers and let them engage pupils in a wider curriculum including the arts and humanities certainly up to the age of fourteen; giving them the opportunity to shine in subjects that they enjoy. We need Ofsted, or its successor, to become more supportive and interested in outcomes rather than process; but not outcomes measured on academic achievement. A good education helps to produce fair-minded, articulate pupils able to take their place in the world treating everyone else as an equal. (Sustainable Development Goal No.10)

 

John Bothamley

Chair of Trustees - Talk The Talk

 

 

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