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  1. 18 Oct '10 07:36
    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/education/8068618/Paying-the-price-for-honesty.html

    Paying the price for honesty

    By Telegraph View
    Published: 7:00AM BST 17 Oct 2010

    Today, we report that Katharine Birbalsingh has left her job in teaching. She was told by the head of her school that she had “misrepresented the school, insulted teachers and exploited pupils”. In reality, she did nothing of the sort. Her principal crime was that she gave a very effective speech at the Conservative Party conference, in which she explained that schools were being systematically undermined by a combination of “low standards and expecting the very least from the poor and disadvantaged”. She added that the unintended effect of ensuring that teachers who discipline black boys for bad behaviour are accused of racism merely means that those boys are untouchable – and they are able to wreck lessons for everyone else as a consequence.

    Like the communist autocrats who imprisoned dissidents for telling the truth about the Soviet regime, the blinkered bureaucrats in charge of the state system in Britain today cannot tolerate someone who accurately reports the dysfunctional mess those bureaucrats have created. Miss Birbalsingh is out of a job for the unpardonable crime of speaking up for disadvantaged pupils who crave discipline and learning, rather than the pathetic free-for-all that passes for an education in too many state schools. Her frankness should have been applauded by her superiors: nothing in the system can improve when no one can recognise what is wrong with it. But no – she has paid a high price for her honesty.

    ...
  2. Standard member DrKF
    incipit parodia
    18 Oct '10 10:32
    Originally posted by zeeblebot
    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/education/8068618/Paying-the-price-for-honesty.html

    Paying the price for honesty

    By Telegraph View
    Published: 7:00AM BST 17 Oct 2010

    Today, we report that Katharine Birbalsingh has left her job in teaching. She was told by the head of her school that she had “misrepresented the school, insulted teachers and exploited pu ...[text shortened]... can recognise what is wrong with it. But no – she has paid a high price for her honesty.

    ...
    While it is clear that she was invited to resign principally because of her speech, which is indeed deplorable, the professionalism of a teacher who names and publishes photographs of children at her school in her blog without their or their parents' consent to illustrate any sort of point, which she did, is in serious question. Of the three accusations, the charge of exploiting pupils, at least, is not in doubt.

    I fully agree that she should not have been invited to resign for the speech she made, but think she should have faced stiff disciplinary action over the contents of her blog (now taken down). Whether that disciplinary action would have led to dismissal, I do not know.
  3. 18 Oct '10 11:25
    Originally posted by zeeblebot
    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/education/8068618/Paying-the-price-for-honesty.html

    Paying the price for honesty

    By Telegraph View
    Published: 7:00AM BST 17 Oct 2010

    Today, we report that Katharine Birbalsingh has left her job in teaching. She was told by the head of her school that she had “misrepresented the school, insulted teachers and exploited pu ...[text shortened]... can recognise what is wrong with it. But no – she has paid a high price for her honesty.

    ...
    Let this be a lesson to all those who dare to challenge Big Brother!!
  4. Standard member DrKF
    incipit parodia
    18 Oct '10 12:53
  5. 18 Oct '10 15:35 / 2 edits
    Originally posted by DrKF
    While it is clear that she was invited to resign principally because of her speech, which is indeed deplorable, the professionalism of a teacher who names and publishes photographs of children at her school in her blog without their or their parents' consent to illustrate any sort of point, which she did, is in serious question. Of the three accusations, the ch ...[text shortened]... (now taken down). Whether that disciplinary action would have led to dismissal, I do not know.
    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/education/educationnews/8052932/Teacher-Katharine-Birbalsingh-recounted-pupils-violence-in-a-blog.html

    according to this article, it says that she didn't specifically name or post photos of her students -- that she just "recounted events involving unnamed individuals". Could you post a liink regarding your information on this?

    But actually -- there was one very clear ground for firing -- No one should be allowed out in public with that hairdo.
  6. Standard member DrKF
    incipit parodia
    18 Oct '10 18:57
    I wouldn't believe everything you read in the Torygraph...

    A statement by the Diocese of Southwark stated that ""Her speech at the Conservative Party conference used pictures of children from our school and made reference to them by name. We are concerned by this and in particular by the way in which the pictures have been used."

    http://www.talktalk.co.uk/news/pa/uknews/2010/10/09/tory-talk-teacher-to-return-to-work.html

    You can see the photos and listen to the children being named in this youtube video of the speech:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_L2l-MA-8Dk

    You'll see from the comments that the latest argument is that she *did* have permission. Funny how the argument has moved from 'she didn't do it' to 'well, she did, but she had permission'. I wonder if the Torygraph have printed a retraction yet? The comments also say the photos 'can't be seen' - well, not too well on TV (although I'll bet every single classmate and parent would have been able to identify the photos), but perfectly well on the giant monitors in front of hundreds of delegates. Finally, even if she *did* have permission, which the diocese seems to imply she did not, perhaps the politic thing to do would have been to run her intentions regarding their use by her superiors so that they would not then be able to express surprise and concern in the way they were used.
  7. 18 Oct '10 19:11
    Originally posted by DrKF
    While it is clear that she was invited to resign principally because of her speech, which is indeed deplorable, the professionalism of a teacher who names and publishes photographs of children at her school in her blog without their or their parents' consent to illustrate any sort of point, which she did, is in serious question. Of the three accusations, the ch ...[text shortened]... (now taken down). Whether that disciplinary action would have led to dismissal, I do not know.
    In the report I read in the Times, usually a reputable newspaper, the parent's permission was obtained. Having not been to school for over forty years, I took this year's Mathematics GCSE, and did well enough to obtain an A grade. I would estimate it to be equivalent to the old 11 plus with maybe a couple of extra skills required.
  8. Standard member DrKF
    incipit parodia
    18 Oct '10 19:26
    Originally posted by acb123
    In the report I read in the Times, usually a reputable newspaper, the parent's permission was obtained. Having not been to school for over forty years, I took this year's Mathematics GCSE, and did well enough to obtain an A grade. I would estimate it to be equivalent to the old 11 plus with maybe a couple of extra skills required.
    Since the Times is behind a paywall these days, sadly we can't see the article (not that I doubt you at all, though!). Even though the Times does report that, I suppose we'll just have to make up our own minds about what we think may have been the case, given the multiple, conflicting accounts.

    And, again, even if she did have the parents' permission, it remains seriously impolitic to have gone ahead as she did - naming children at the school, showing pictures of those children - without consulting her superiors about the way she would go about using them.

    Personally, the sheer inconsistency in accounts regarding the use of photos/names makes me think there's been a frantic rearguard action to defend her from the only serious accusation to be levelled against her.
  9. 18 Oct '10 21:36 / 1 edit
    Originally posted by DrKF
    I wouldn't believe everything you read in the Torygraph...

    A statement by the Diocese of Southwark stated that ""Her speech at the Conservative Party conference used pictures of children from our school and made reference to them by name. We are concerned by this and in particular by the way in which the pictures have been used."

    http://www.talk would not then be able to express surprise and concern in the way they were used.
    Most schools have parents sign a waiver in the beginning of the school year.
  10. Standard member Bosse de Nage
    Zellulärer Automat
    18 Oct '10 21:37
    Originally posted by cheshirecatstevens
    Most schools have parents sign a waiver in the beginning of the school year.
    I'm sure I waivered when I sighed.