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Ted Wragg

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About Ted Wragg

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  1. The proposal by a member of the Professional Association of Teachers that the word "failure" should be excised from the classroom was met with predictable mirth, rather than serious debate. That was partly because the proposed euphemism "deferred success" is pretty hilarious. "Yes you did fail your driving test for mowing down several pedestrians on that zebra crossing, Mr Scudworthy, but think of it as deferred success. On your next test you'll probably only ram the car into a tree, and then the time after, you might even pass, if the examiner manages to press the ejector-seat button in time.
  2. First, set schools free from the suffocating hand of government. I once said to David Blunkett that the government was burying schools under silly prescriptions. He replied: "That's only what gets through. You should see the stuff I stop." Why does the government tell schools they must introduce a house system? Why does the 2002 Education Act require schools to write to you, the minister (and fill in a stupid form), if they want to innovate? What an insult. Second, Blairite or not, brass-neck it and tell the prime minister's policy unit to go and boil its head. Some of the barmiest schemes o
  3. Ted Wragg is emeritus professor of education at Exeter University. He has taught in primary and secondary schools and in two universities. He has directed numerous research projects and is the author of over 40 books, several of which have been translated into other languages. He is a frequent broadcaster and writes regularly in newspapers.
  4. The most irritating term ever used by politicians is the word "modernisation". Language is elastic for the powerful, who can make words mean whatever they want, but some notions of modernity defy belief. Worse, those against modernisation, as conceived by its protagonists, are labelled "conservative". In October 1999, Tony Blair used a speech to new headteachers to attack the profession, saying a mindset existed within teaching that was "one of the most powerful forces of conservatism in our society". This accusation was hurled at a profession that had implemented dozens of "initiatives" eman
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