020. Replace small schools with “hubs”

This idea is probably going to be the one where I’m hung out to dry! Yes, it looks like I’m advocating for amalgamating small schools. However, read on, before you accuse me of killing rural Ireland! Rather than killing rural communities, my proposal is to build them. Having 3 schools with less than 30 pupils … Read more

School Size doesn't equal better teaching ?

An interesting report was published last week, which is certain to stir things up in the debate around small schools. According to the report (linked above), there appears to be little difference between a school’s size and the quality of teaching. The Department of Education were quick to add that this report had nothing to do with the debate around the viability of small schools and Ruairi Quinn was quoted as saying that small schools would be a major feature in the education landscape.

Would you let this man be in charge of your child's education?

I’ve had a few days to calm myself down about the budget so I could write coherently about the mess that we’ve been put into.  Everyone is incredibly angry and rightly so; in fact, just looking at the picture on the left fills me with rage.  The man on the left is responsible for the education of every person in this country.  I thought Mary Hanafin was terrible…well she was, but this guy is the most useless politician I’ve ever seen.  He didn’t even have the brains to invent some originailty in his budget cuts.  Instead he decided to look back a few years ago when the government spent even less money on education and thought to himself…”hmmm, I’ll simply copy those ideas.”
So now we’re back to having a maximum of two language support teachers which won’t affect small schools but bigger schools will now have to use their General Allocation hours.  That means will children who were struggling have their hours cut for the greater good?
Now we will feel guilty for being sick.  Being a teacher means being with large (even larger now) groups of children.  Children spend their time diseased and, as teachers, we are very likely to pick one or two of these minor ailments up.  These colds, snuffles, sniffles, man-flus (or whatever you want to call them) last about a day or two if the teacher gets a bit of rest.  Now, in order not to let our children suffer, we will either have to come in and make ourselves sicker or go to a doctor (€60 down the drain) to get a piece of paper and a bit of rest in order for a sub to come in.  Never mind the inconvenioence for principals and unemployed qualified teachers who got some sub days.

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