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This Blog is now defunct and has been replaced by (and all existing posts moved to) Ipolli.com/blog.
You can get there by Clicking Here
The facts of the matter are that school uniforms do not do what they are supposed to do.
This is not the fault of school uniforms. Bits of cloth. It is the fault of those who ‘suppose’ things they’ll do.
They suppose wrong.
Apparently, according to some of the study authors I have read, there simply have not been many studies.
This doesn’t mean there haven’t been many pronouncements.
There have, no doubt, been many pronouncements. Irresponsible, misleading, unprofessional announcements.
But to stick to the science, the known, the demonstrable, the proven we find few studies.
Amongst those there are probably the most respected and most thorough is that by David L. Brunsma from the University of Alabama and Kerry A. Rockquemore of Notre Dame.
This study found, in conclusion:
Based upon this analysis, the authors were forced to reject the ideas that uniforms improved attendance rates, decreased behavioral problems, decreased drug use, or improved academic achievement. The authors did find that proschool attitudes from students and their peers and good academic preparedness did predict the desired behavior. They saw that wearing uniforms did not lead to improvements in proschool attitudes or increased academic preparation.
What does this mean? Read it. Think. It means uniforms will not do the students – your children, my children, our children – any good and they won’t do the school any good.
DESPITE what is claimed by those who should know of this study and who should only claim truthful things.
And this study fails entirely to study the effects upon the family of pressuring students into uniforms. Everything from emotional upset to financial strain.
And it fails entirely to study the ongoing effects in later life of being subjected to this kind of treatment at school.
All of that is true. This is overwhelming evidence and there is more to be found.
So it proves conclusively that the uniforms are useless and therefore bad, but look again, it also suggests what is good. GOOD. The direction that WILL achieve what these uniform lovers claim to want to achieve.
For what did the authors conclude:
The authors did find that proschool attitudes from students and their peers and good academic preparedness did predict the desired behavior.
The authors found that if students and their peers were PRO-SCHOOL, in favour of school, liked their school, wanted to go to the school – then this predicted the ‘desired behaviour’.
Stands to reason, doesn’t it? But how many want to see reason?
And the authors also found that:
They saw that wearing uniforms did not lead to improvements in proschool attitudes or increased academic preparation.
Wearing uniforms didn’t help a bit. Not even in changing this “predictor” attitude.
So the lesson is clear. The way is clear. Get the students and their peers (and their parents and their friends and their school teachers and administrators) to LIKE the school. Give them something to LIKE. Teach them to love it. Increase the happiness quotient.
Stop being heavy draconian administrators and punishers determined to flatten all your children into humbly acquiescing shapeless blobs of the same colour – and become living human beings with some love and some liking and demonstrate that to the children. Show them the way.
You will, willy-nilly, show them ‘the way’. For what they see at the school is what they will believe is the nature of their society.
That’s the problem.
There is one case that is frequently quoted by the lovers of uniforms……
(and note this: they are lovers of uniforms - they are NOT lovers of education, lovers of children, lovers of schooling, lovers of family, home, country or whatever – they simply love uniforms and in the absence of clear, convincing evidence of the beneficial effects of uniforms they Push Mightily For Them Anyway!
Thereby giving away their true love, their true motivation, their true heart and soul.
They, of course, educators, public officials, whatever, should NOT do this. But they do and you/we let them get away with it.)
…. and that one case is the case of Palm Beach. A famous case. It seemed to indicate a clear win for school uniforms, changed that school immensely, dramatically, apparently. Impressed President Clinton to such an extend that he broadcast publicly in favour of school uniforms.
There’s a couple of facts need to be stated about that case:
. Palm Beach schools were more or less living hells of gang violence in a way we simply wouldn’t believe here in the rest of the world. To simply stop a nightmare of swaggering gangs of knife and gun carrying juvenile delinquents running the school and its grounds was a ‘dramatic change’.
That is to say, bringing those schools halfway towards what we’ve already got would be, was, a ‘dramatic change’.
. At this same time (of course) there were many, many other things happened at that school (or those schools) directed towards improving the situation – they had people patrolling the corridors of the schools for instance, it was dramatic.
It is obvious now, to all later reviewers of this case, that the data was not reasonably reported. Just paying attention to the problem, showing willingness to deal with it, bringing in people to enforce rules and guarantee safety, showing the ‘good kids’ that the staff and the school were on their side – all of these measures and more were more than enough to ensure a dramatic and radical change in any case.
To say the school changed because someone said : ‘wear uniforms’ is a joke type interpretation of the situation. Unfortunately Presidents – or politicians generally – are briefed hurriedly and are not famous for scientific deliberation or analysis of situations… are they?
. Latterly the situation has turned around and started to go downhill…. as the ‘extra effects’ wear off or are diminished in size and/or scope the uniforms remain and are powerless of themselves to do anything…….
And, to end, of course all of this exists within the context of the family, the home, the wider society.
Forcible imposition of a mode of dress brings all kinds of hardships and wrongs with it inevitably. Inevitably. ‘Forcible’ and ‘Imposition’ are wrongs in themselves. In an educational context they become more wrong. In a Junior educational context they become worse.
It would take great proven ‘rights’ to ever offset these wrongs. None such have ever been shown. Ever.
I’ve been thinking all day about students with their heads bent over their desks.
Well, perhaps not thinking about it, but the picture has come again and again into my mind.
Along with the thought: what’s what the child, the student, is wearing got to do with anything then?
Nothing. The mind is occupied. The student is studying.
Too busy with their own studying to notice or care what anyone else is wearing, or what they are themselves wearing.
I keep returning to this ludicrous compulsory uniforms thing.
Can’t get it out of my mind.
They love uniforms, some people. Some people who should know better. Some people in Education (with a capital ‘E’). Educators.
Supposedly ‘Educators’, though obviously, in reality, not so.
They seem to think that anyone, anywhere, wearing a uniform presents a case for children wearing uniforms in schools.
Because they wear uniforms in the military, they should wear uniforms in schools.
I don’t think they argue that because they wear uniforms in Woolworths, they should wear uniforms in schools – though this would be a more pertinent argument.
It is interesting to pursue the military uniform thing for a while.
Why do the military wear uniforms? To make them cleverer? Better educated? Better able to learn?
That’s a joke, isn’t it. No one has ever accused the military of being clever, or even well educated and certainly not capable of learning quick lessons. As untold thousands of dead and maimed soldiers testifies.
Why people keep going to their deaths as soldiers is a most intriguing question. But for sometimes/somewhere else.
Back to our question. So if it is not for the purposes of education what do the military don uniforms for? To raise morale? To generate an ‘esprit de corps’?
Quite the opposite, as anyone who’s ever been in the military should be able to testify. I’ve been there. I can testify.
The uniform is intended to put you in your place – and that, generally, is at the bottom of the heap. The uniform is intended to make you well aware of that fact.
But that’s today. That’s the use of the uniform in military training establishments probably the world over.
Where did the uniforms come from?
Well it is as mundane and ordinary as a need to identify your own side. In the smoke and heat and commotion of battle.
They are simply a means of identification in the first place.
And then they get modified to provide utility.
And then they get modified to glorify the leaders and make clear the difference between them and ‘the men’ or ‘the other ranks’ or ‘the foot soldiers’ or ‘the cannon fodder’.
Witness the ludicrous popinjay effect of many uniforms of the past – possibly nowhere so evident as in the former ‘British Empire’ which got there, and maintained itself there, on the bodies of thousands of ‘common soldiers’, ‘other ranks’, ‘tommies’ – poor, miserable, ‘lower class’ cannon fodder in drab khaki.
We’ve all seen – haven’t we? – those military leaders with a chest full, quite literally, full, a rectangular ‘board’ covering virtually the whole chest, of medal ribbons. How comical. How ridiculous. How pathetic. As though this overweight, flabby, bibulous, pompous, overpaid, underworked, cretinous bore had been a hero in countless battles…
While the real ‘heroes’ of countless battles, those who were in the front line day after day after day, month after month, year after year…. wear, perhaps, one small ‘campaign ribbon’.
How terrifying when we consider such as these and such as those who put him there and keep him there (in that comic cuts uniform) are those that decide the fates of nations and engineer the death, maiming and destruction of thousands, even millions.
Such is the nature of our world and such it apparently always was.
Essentially the soldier has to be dehumanised and the uniform plays a large part in that. You are an anonymous nothing. This has to be made clear to early in your training. You must learn ‘group think’ or ‘hive mentality’ or whatever: you must learn that the good of the whole clearly transcends the good for yourself.
You must be prepared to sacrifice yourself for the whole.
That is an imperative – uniform or not the army cannot continue unless the ‘men’ are prepared to die or be mutilated.
Isn’t that ironic in itself? Customarily the common soldiers are referred to as ‘the men’ by their fatuous, popinjay, mindless leaders. As though to proclaim to the world that there are the ‘men’. Not here, amongst the leaders. But there amongst the ‘other ranks’ of soldiers.
Amongst the leaders we – they seem to be saying, admitting – we find no men.
But back to the uniform thing:
Where simply wearing a hat or a headscarf, an armband or any of a number of other contrivances would serve to identify you in a combat situation, a complete uniform has a much more pervasive and potent ability.
It covers you. It submerges you entirely. You are part of it. You are in it. You are gone. It remains.
We were taught that we must salute our officers and it was justified to us thus: You are saluting the uniform the officer wears.
You see? The uniform is bigger than the men. And bigger than the officers, they pretend. Humanity is gone. It is baldly stated so. Humanity is gone and all that is left is this robot construction – an ‘army’ and ‘discipline’ and ‘uniformity’.
You are further dehumanised by being forced to spend many hours slaving ludicrously over this uniform – polishing parts, ironing parts just so, cleaning, tending, adjusting…. like an obsessive compulsive you must labour over tiny details of your uniform lest you be punished………..
The t.v. was pleased, some time ago, to show us a few shows about the Coldstream Guards in England, the soldiers that guard the Queen and stand guard in their big black ‘busby’ hats at the palace gates. This is a very proud regiment. The longest serving regiment in the British Army or somesuch. Very proud warriors, very proud indeed.
We saw these young heroes at work polishing and neurotically tending their uniforms in an absolute fever and fervour for days, weeks on end….
A madness that’s difficult to believe, something out of Lewis Carroll you’d think, akin to the mad hatter’s tea party, but in fact something the British Army and that Regiment take very seriously indeed.
That’s what uniforms lead to. That’s the end result of dress uniformity….
I’m a bit incoherent here, have been, still am. I started doing this because of a charge of indignation I got about the way my child was being treated at school and the way the Department of Education responded to an earlier call for assistance.
All I wanted to do at first was tell the world what ‘they’ were doing to my children. Shout it out. Express my indignation.
Then as I put some thought into it I saw more of what they were doing.
‘They’ being that school in particular and by inference and association the whole education system at large. For I don’t suppose this school is unique in its attitudes, methods, interface with parents and public.
More and more I saw more and more that was wrong.
There’s apparently an incredible attitude on the part of the schools, their administrators, apparently even their teachers, that they are answerable to no one but themselves. It seems to even extend to the Department pending further advice.
So I thought about it and realised that in truth they’ve ‘lost the plot’.
They have lost the plot because we have lost the plot.
The whole nation has lost the plot. The whole western world.
And it is manifested in the schools.
We send our children to school to ‘educate’ them. To ‘fit them for life’.
That’s what we say.
But what are we really doing?
Half the time we’re sending them to school to get rid of them. The job of looking after children is purely terrible, awful, shocking, disastrous. So schools are just glorified, disguised, in-secret child minding centres.
Why are children such a hassle? Because of our western way of life, because of our culture, our society, our world, what we’ve built.
And yet that’s what we say we are ‘fitting them’ for.
And when we are not just getting rid of them for the day we are hoping they’ll get a ‘good education’.
Well what does that mean? It means an education that will fit them to get a good job. Doesn’t it? Who will argue with that? No one. I’ll b et. No one reading this will argue with that at this point. Not one in a hundred. Who can see anything wrong with fitting your children to ‘get a good job’ ? No one.
And there’s the problem.
Someone who can get a good job is just – no matter how glorified – just another worker ant, a slave, just another termite in the mound.
Sure, we’ve got to do it – we’ve all got to work, slave away from cradle to grave…… but is that all?
And the price is to have a world, a life, where we can’t put up with our own children? Where we are happy to be parted from them all day? Or: ho ho ho, I hear you protesting mightily – ‘oh, no, not me, I’d love to have my children with me all the time…’ Well, sure, I don’t doubt you. More power to your elbow. You’re an inspiration to us all. But in your case, then, isn’t it fairly horrible to be in a world where you have to be parted from your children from the earliest age – just so’s you can earn the wherewithal to survive?
And with this we breed children, indocrinate, programme, brain wash, children to be the same as ourselves.
Yes, there’s something wrong. It is easy to see once you look.
This is not a society devoted to life, it is a society devoted to economic slavery.
Our political parties are without inspiration. They are virtually identical. Arguing over what’s the best way to handle the money. That’s all they can think of to talk about. We are sick of them, bored with them, cynical about them…..
They’ve got no inspiration because they are frightened of the necessary next step, the inspiring step that is required: a complete makeover of the whole thing, a whole new paradigm (to use a trendy new word) – a whole new way of thinking for the whole nation.
Is it even possible? Because most people won’t even think about a thing if they think it is impossible. And I reckon 90% would laugh this idea out of court.
But listen, there is a place in the world – is it Bhutan? – where the government measures the nation’s ‘happiness index’.
And that’s fairly outlandish, isn’t it?
This is a pretty blatant imposition upon people, isn’t it? Did you see ‘newsletter 28′ ? It had this in it, right on the front page:
What does this mean? It means not every child gets to school in a uniform. So the school intends to put them in one, the way they put my child in one, second hand, unasked, unexplained where it was from, the condition, cleanliness of it.
But WHY doesn’t every child come to the school in a uniform?
Common sense suggests two reasons right off:
1. The parents don’t want to send the child in uniform.
2. The parents can’t afford to send the child in uniform.
In NEITHER of these cases should a uniform be imposed on the child.
And let us be clear here, let there be no ambiguity whatsoever, what this whole thing is about is compulsion, imposing a condition, demanding compliance, making threats of punishment for non-compliance.
Think of the possible pain and embarrassment for parents who cannot afford uniforms. What academic, what educational, what spiritual, what psychological benefit is gained by imposing this upon them?
And where is the propriety of it? I have seen nothing to indicate there is any propriety in it.
Such children now are singled out every single day for special attention as needy children who can’t afford uniforms and need to go to the office and borrow one.
Thank god the little kids like mine just don’t understand these things and it all passes over their heads, or beneath their notice is perhaps a better way of saying it.
And for those who can afford but chose not to – what about them? Why are they being treated this way? Who claims the right to subject their children to this treatment when they arrive at the school? Who decided to build this kind of school?
There it is. A clear declaration in bold yellow of what is going on at that school.
And the principal calls this ‘fantastic’ ! ‘Fantastic’ is the word he uses. He uses it also in the first paragraph of his newsletter when referring to a parade – it, too, was ‘fantastic’.
You know what ‘fantastic’ means, don’t you? It means ‘of fantasy’. Not real. Not true.
Our kids typically use the word to describe anything at all – they’re kids, they know little, we send them to school to learn how to speak.. .. We think they’re going to learn how to use the language… we think.
But maybe the word is right, after all, with reference to the uniform thing. Yes. Maybe it is very apt. ‘Fantastic’, ‘of fantasy’, ‘not real’, ‘not true’. Yes. Apt. The whole thing is exactly that – fantasy.
Fantasy benefits. Fantasy justifications.
In an establishment of learning.
Despite what certain people say the evidence about school uniforms is that they are NOT good.
What ‘certain people’ say is inevitably ill-informed, misinformed, inaccurate, misleading, unscientific – and, considering where it comes from, the mouths out of which it comes, improper.
That ‘improperness’ is important. It comes from the mouths of people paid to lead and show exemplary conduct, people paid respect and given priorities and considerations not given the rest of us. To mouth illconsidered ( and that’s a leaning-back politeness, of course, it would well be they considered carefully before pronouncing their misleading junk) statements influencing policies that cause considerable disturbance, difficulty and even economic hardship is reprehensible in the extreme.
Look here now: The Sydney Morning Herald publishes directions to the truth.
This study can be seen Here (if you’ve the access or are prepared to pay for it).
These studies though DON’T tell the full story.
They study academic parameters or the ludicrous nebulous parameters put forward by lovers of uniforms ( ‘esprit de corps’, ‘feeling of community’ etc…) and inevitably after expense of much money and time, find negative correlations if any.
Then they publish these facts and these facts are carefully ignored by those lovers-of-uniforms and haters-of-individuality (why are these people challenged, frightened of, hiding from, individual children and their personalities, abilities, life forces?).
What they DON’T investigate and DON’T publish facts about is the strain and turmoil, the pain and disturbance and hardship brought about within families by the introduction of these farcical play actings.
Strain between children and parents apparently (my children are not yet adolescent) grows as the children near school-leaving and become ever more sensitive to their own appearance.
Strain for the parents I can vouch for. The hassle of looking for clothes every morning to clothe children hell bent on destroying every article of clothing they’ve ever owned, or hiding it, or throwing it away and at the very least dirtying every single item the minute it comes in from the line is only vastly increased by some tyrannical dictate that one finds a clean, untorn UNIFORM item every morning.
Add to that the financial cost and we’ve already racked up a fair weight of problems, difficulties, impositions and intrusions upon one’s life.
But there is, of course, even more, because one is supposed to shop for these things. One is expected to dutifully get into the wheels and trundle down to the shops and shop for the appropriate items. A great demand on time, energy, fuel, resources and one to which I take great exception.
Add all that in and then you’ve got an assessment of the effect of school uniforms. Then you are somewhere near an appraisal of the actual efficacy of the things.
But even then the picture is not complete. No scientific study would really be complete. For there’s the whole question of implementation. How are these policies implemented? How are they devised? How much of these methodologies is within their authority? Clearly disseminating false information is not. How much more are they doing that they have no right to do?
In other words implementation of uniform policies also includes the area of proper conduct of administrators and educators: hiding under a masquerade of promoting proper conduct for students – raising hoops and bars and hurdles and insisting that students negotiate this obstacle course in order to prove ‘proper conduct’ – and imposing the same on parents – these people meanwhile hide the fact that their own conduct is sadly – SADLY. Because we want good educators and we want them on our side and we want to be on their side. SADLY. – sadly miscreant.
Listen: MY CHILD IS NOT IN SCHOOL TO APPEAR AS A BLOODY IDENTICAL DAISY IN YOUR DAISY CHAIN OF CLONES – HE IS THERE FOR AN EDUCATION!!!
Why can’t they understand this?
And there’s the rub. They obviously cannot understand that this business has nothing to do with education. They cannot understand scientific evidence. They will not even search for it. They cannot understand truth – they utter misleading or obviously false utterances. They cannot, it seems, conduct themselves as they should – given the positions they are in, the tasks they have.
THEY SHOULD BE SACKED!!
Or given remedial education of some sort. They are not doing their jobs. They are being stupid and false and bad.
And it is the duty of the Minister and the Department to see this.
How can it be otherwise? The facts are plain. The facts are simple.
There are three features to the uniform question, two of them never mentioned, generally:
. Efficacy in the claimed academic context.
. Effect upon the parents, the home, the parent/child relation, the parent/school relation.
. Proper conduct context of the administrators/educators promoting and implementing these policies.
In each of these three areas we see clear failure of the good.
No efficacy in any study. Harm at home. Improper conduct at school.
Why don’t the educators see this? THAT is the over-riding question. Why don’t they see these things?
1. They don’t care about academic efficacy.
They only want our children to look like peas in a pod. Thereby reducing their status and their individuality and potential threat as a workload and real challenge to them.
2. They don’t care about the home, about you or me.
About the parents, about the child at home and his/her relationship with the parents or about the harm the school is doing there. A whole sociological study in itself.
3. They don’t care about their own proper conduct.
They feel they are above the law, laws unto themselves. They feel they teach – ‘teach’ everyone and everything… they are the ‘teachers’ therefore they ‘know’ and the rest of us don’t. Therefore no one can direct them in any way. Therefore they are above the law.
And that’s the nub of it.
A vast canker within our educational system. Education gone badly wrong.
So the situation we have at South Primary School, Murray Bridge is this:
The Principal says that:
On the grounds of no evidence for any benefit and with total disregard for any harm, damage or inconvenience to parents or students and without regard to what I can properly do or not I command that you all immediately comply with my mandatory school uniform policy…..
because I like to walk through a sea of maroon.
How’s that? You want your child educated by that sort of attitude? That sort of milieu? What effect do you think that has on the child?
I’d like to maroon him in a sea.
And did you see that bit in, what was it, the last newsletter? About the 27th was the last day to get your ‘Annual Parent Opinion Survey’ back? Your last chance to ‘…. have your say about our school…’ ?
Did you get that survey? I didn’t. We didn’t. Isn’t it funny that we got every (or at least many) missives about the tyrannical uniform policy but nothing about inputting our opinions? Isn’t that a strange quirk of fate?
As with so much hereabouts though it is not right. You, me, none of us have had our ‘..last chance to have..’ a say about the school.
We are – though he may not know it or may know it but not agree with it – free citizens of the country of Australia and the State of South Australia and we are free to express our opinions at any time.
Not only that but as good citizens it is incumbent upon us to express our opinion of things we know of that are possibly detrimental to the health and growth of our society.
Such things, incidentally, as a school that says things like that, has attitudes like that.
Now my boy comes home in the evening wearing a school uniform jumper. When I point this out to him he’s quite startled and says he’s forgotten to give it back to them. He forgot to take it off and give it back to them.
It turns out he’s been wearing (“borrowing”) one of their jumpers every day this week. Without my knowledge. Or my wife’s knowledge.
I still don’t know anything about these jumpers.
This in a town where every school, every kindergarten, every child care has periodic scares about head lice. What could these jumpers carry?
But that’s not the point. Is it?
The point is I sent my son to school adequately dressed in undershirt, shirt and jumper and they’ve taken off his jumper and substituted their own.
Without my permission and with clear evidence before them that I object to this.
They have no right to do this.
It is all apparently done because they have a principal who gets delighted by the sight of rows of identically dressed schoolchildren.
It is a known feature of humans that order – visual order, patterns and such – can please their eye, their sense of balance, can appear pleasing.
Hence rows of wheat tossing in the wind – or standing motionless, even – a plantation of trees, even telegraph poles alongside a road, all these things and many more like them get photographed or drawn or painted quite frequently and turn up in art exhibitions of various kinds here and there.
Order. Orderly rows of pineapples, of trees, of logs, of insects, of anything.
Pleases many people. Delights this principal.
But my son wasn’t sent to school to delight the principal by his appearance.
He was sent to the school to get an education.
I wonder if this principal and his staff have any idea that is the purpose of a school? I wonder if they have any interest in serving that purpose?
I guess it is the arrogance that upsets, mainly. The arrogance of the school that wouldn’t put up safety signs – the arrogance of the woman that came hurtling out of the place to try to bar and challenge my presence in the place, all the while pretending she didn’t know who I was, the arrogance of the woman who did the same thing in the other school in different but similar circumstances (and – total prize topper for the whole thing – all the time holding a cup of tea while she burbled on) also pretending and the arrogance of this authoritarian carryon now at this place.
Authoritarian? Actually the principal supplied the right word himself. I hadn’t thought of it. He claimed – ‘We are not autocratic’ but that, of course, is precisely what they are. Autocratic. That’s the word.
I’ve just been looking at some ‘newsletters’ – I don’t have many, only a few that survived the passage home in my son’s pack. He’s not accustomed to being used as a mailman and I was never expecting it.
The principal burbles on repeatedly about how happy he is to see the uniforms. “…. it is really impressive to walk through the school and see a sea of maroon. Well done.”
Well. If that’s what’s impressive it’s news to me. I thought what would be impressive would be a school full of happy, healthy, bright alert children. That’s what impresses me.
When I see your children I’m impressed by their personalities, by the light in their eyes, by the spring in their step, by their happiness, energy, sheer life force.
Must be something wrong with me. A ‘sea of maroon’ seems drab and flattening, miserable and poor to me, somehow…
He gets impressed. ” It is really impressive walking through the classrooms or seeing the students in the yard with everyone in maroon.”
That’s impressive, is it? I see nothing impressive about it. In that case he’d be totally in seventh heaven if he saw a Chinese school of 10,000 children all in identical uniforms, wouldn’t he?
What does he do for kicks? Go watch military parades?
What’s impressive about everyone in the same colour?
How many poor individuals did he pick out who found the clothing constricting, annoying, embarrassing, inconvenient?
None. Of course. Because the whole point is to not see any individuals.
‘… everyone in maroon…’ No. Not ‘everyone’ is in maroon. Just the kids. Only the kids. The whole idea is separate the kids from the rest. The whole idea is to subjugate, to wipe out, to smear into conformity…
But this says it better than I can: Click here.
Yes, what do I want? That’s the point. I was in a kind of incoherent rage at my child being singled out, unfairly treated, the calumny aimed at him, the unprofessionalism of the ‘professionals’, the danger into which he’d walked in a supposedly safe place – and so on……
So I rushed into this action. A blog, a forum, a web site devoted to the problem. Rushed so quickly I didn’t stop to think – What do I want?
And I didn’t stop to think – Who Gives A Damn?
Well I’ll leave the latter question for later – the answer’s probably ‘No one’, but that doesn’t mean it should be the answer, that doesn’t mean it’s the end of it.
But what do I want?
Well I want an immediate cessation to bad, improper practice and a return (if it is a return) to proper conduct on the part of the officers/teachers/administrators/whatever of these two schools and the Department of Education.
That’s essentially what I want. People given the responsibility to do what they’re paid for.
Pretty simple, really. Simple and obvious. Sort of ‘goes without saying’. I didn’t need to state it. But I have. Just to make sure.
Well I don’t seem to have much to say for someone who reckons he’s got so much on his mind, found so much ‘wrongdoing’.
So what am I on about? I better start by clearing that up.
1. My son’s school scorned improving safety after my child was knocked down and lost a tooth.
They should not have done that.
2. The Dept of Education ran an unasked, unprepared, undefined, in camera ‘investigation’ without my knowledge and came up with – astonishingly – ‘absolution’ for the school – and refused to reply to my communications further.
They should not have done that.
3. My son’s school kept a daily ‘dossier’ of his unilaterally defined misdeeds without my knowledge or participation and eventually suspended him from the school in a unilateral in camera judgement.
They should not have done that.
4. My son’s school took a typical child incident and blew it into a major drama, made a disgusting, provocative (to his parents), unprofessional and invalid assessment of the situation and responded with a totally invalid response.
They should not have done that.
5. My son’s school currently attempts to cajole and coerce us parents and psychologically intimidate my son with an improper push for a mandatory school uniform.
They should not do that.
So. Clear enough? I always tend to use too many words. I don’t write well. I speak even worse.
To try to reduce to the even more succinct:
Both of my child’s schools and the Department of Education has behaved and are behaving improperly and I’ve had a gutful of it.
There you go.