REMEMBER when the priority of our schooling system was supposed to be “education, education, education”?
Today it’s “indoctrination, indoctrination, indoctrination” schools seem to be in the business of.
There is too much focus on race, too little reading and writing — and when it comes to lesson plans, too much gender on the agenda.
Parents increasingly find themselves locking horns with teachers turned social-justice activists.
It emerged this week the parents of a London teenager are at loggerheads with teachers at their daughter’s school after being barred from seeing lesson plans.
They are fighting for the legal right to see “secret” lessons their daughter has been taught on issues such as white privilege — the idea that people with white skin are born with social and economic advantages over those who are not.
Failed in the basics
This comes after the school, Haberdashers’ Hatcham College in South East London, reportedly denied the parents access to the materials used to teach their daughter.
So, let me get this right.
You’re forced to pay exorbitant taxes to prop up our bloated, ineffective education system, you then send your children off to school, at risk of prosecution if they don’t turn up, and you don’t even get a right to see what the predominantly lefty teachings are feeding your children?
You couldn’t make it up.
I see two major problems here.
Firstly, teachers should not be using precious learning time to brainwash kids about nonsense US theories on race and gender gibberish as if it is sacred truth.
Education Secretary Nadhim Zahawi has said as much.
Last October he warned: “Schools should not teach contested theories and opinions as fact and this includes contested views about white privilege.”
This came after he was given a dossier by the Free Speech Union warning that the teaching of things like white privilege and micro-aggressions was “rife” in schools.
With identity ideology running rampant in classrooms, you would think we had already mastered every other core topic that teachers are supposed to be teaching, like — oh, I don’t know — reading and writing.
Wrong. Last September, Government figures showed 200,000 pupils would be entering secondary school unable to read properly.
Maths is no better. One in five leave primary school without having reached the expected standard.
Under these dire circumstances, not a single second should be dedicated to dubious race and gender theories when children are being failed in the basics on such a massive scale.
And don’t get me started on the idea that kids should be taught that white children are endowed with some special, mystical privilege.
Tell that to the white working-class boys who perform worse in British schools than almost any other ethnic group.
As inconvenient as this is to lefty victim-mongers, this is irrefutable fact.
I know this because I’ve spent years poring over the stats, not least when I recently sat on the Government’s Commission on Race and Ethnic Disparities.
Publicly paid teachers squandering finite classroom time on woke drivel is not only misleading and pointless, it’s perverse and downright wrong.
The second problem is this: While parents are allowed to ask to see their children’s lesson plans, schools are not legally obliged to provide them.
Schools can hide behind the cloak of legal immunity when they are subjected to accusations of “secret lessons”.
How can this be right?
You should not have to write a softly worded letter to kindly request knowing what your own kid is being taught when you drop them off at school.
Schools should be completely at the mercy of parents when it comes to demands for transparency around teaching.
Teaching materials and lesson plans should be dished out speedily and without contest any time a parent requests one — and that should be enshrined in law.
That is why it is right that Baroness Morris of Yardley, a former Labour Education Secretary, has tabled an amendment to the Schools Bill to give parents the legal right to see what their children are being taught.
Mr Zahawi has made it clear that teaching children disputed ideas as fact is completely unacceptable.
He should go even further and confirm the law will be firmly on the side of parents who are concerned about identity politics propaganda in schools.
If he doesn’t, the infiltration of these dangerous ideas in classrooms will continue to be spread by the army of ever-more woke teachers.