Jump to content
The Education Forum

Wikipedia and the International School of Toulouse


John Simkin
 Share

Recommended Posts

I would like to discuss the Wikipedia entry for the International School of Toulouse. The school is owned by the multinational corporation, Airbus.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/International...ool_of_Toulouse

It was created by the head of ICT at the school. If one types in “International School of Toulouse” at Google it appears second in the ranking after the official school website.

Two main groups of people are likely to carry out searches for this private school: (1) Parents thinking of sending their children to the school; (2) Teachers thinking of working at the school.

The school is currently involved in a bitter dispute. The head teacher, Les Albiston, has recently sacked two members of staff, Richard Jones-Nerzic and Tanya Carlile. This is only the latest in a series of sackings that have taken place because Les Albiston does not like anyone to question his authority. The full story can be read here:

http://educationforum.ipbhost.com/index.php?showtopic=9029

The parents and staff are united in their attempts to get these two teachers reinstated. Richard Jones-Nerzic is one of the world’s leading figures in the use of ICT in history and his case has also been taken up by the international teaching community.

Two main groups of people are likely to carry out searches for the International School of Toulouse: (1) Parents thinking of sending their children to the school; (2) Teachers thinking of working at the school.

I thought it is only reasonable that these parents and students should be aware of the problems at the school. In fact, when I visited the Wikipedia page it included the following passage: “Recent developments within the school has, however, shown a degree of mistrust between the upper management and the Student Body when a loved and respectable teacher who excelled in his role was dismissed under grounds which have yet to be commented on by the school due to 'legal' reasons. Despite what the management maintain, the students are not content with the current situation of the school. This incident follows many teachers leaving the school suddenly with little to no official reason given.”

This was fairly vague and so I therefore added a link to my page providing a dispassionate account of the background to the case and a joint letter sent to Les Albiston and the International School of Toulouse.

http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/LesAlbiston.htm

In a very short period this link was removed. So also was the passage above that refered to the recent sackings. I received an email from the head of ICT at the IST saying that he was responsible for this and that he will continue to edit this page on behalf of Les Albiston. The motives of this person is highly suspect. For a start, his wages are paid by Albiston. He also faces the same treatment handed out to Richard Jones-Nerzic, Tanya Carlile, and the others who have been sacked for questioning the head’s decisions.

As I said before, Richard Jones-Nerzic is getting support from educators all over the world. Some of them created pages on the situation and added the links to the Wikipedia page. They also were quickly removed.

I have just restored the original text and the link to my website (10.30 a.m.) but I suspect it will soon be removed.

Charles Matthews, have you any comments on this situation.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Charles, thanks for adding the controversy section. Is it possible to add a link to this forum where educators, parents, and students have expressed their comments about this controversy?

http://educationforum.ipbhost.com/index.php?showtopic=9029

This has been edited out again presumably by the same lickspittle at IST who has been active there over the last few days

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Charles, thanks for adding the controversy section. Is it possible to add a link to this forum where educators, parents, and students have expressed their comments about this controversy?

http://educationforum.ipbhost.com/index.php?showtopic=9029

This has been edited out again presumably by the same lickspittle at IST who has been active there over the last few days

The reference to the sacking of Richard and the link to the E-HELP page is still there. According to Charles Matthews, referenced comments are rarely deleted. I will be really surprised if the "lickspittle" (head of ICT at the IST) will be able to remove this. Les will not be pleased about this. Maybe he will be Les' next target. If so, will anybody be willing to fight for his reinstatement. When I found out who was editing this page I sent him a poem by Martin Niemöller. He was a German pastor who originally supported the Nazi government.

First they came for the communists, and I did not speak out - because I was not a communist;

Then they came for the socialists, and I did not speak out - because I was not a socialist;

Then they came for the trade unionists, and I did not speak out - because I was not a trade unionist;

Then they came for the Jews, and I did not speak out - because I was not a Jew;

Then they came for me - and there was no one left to speak out for me.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Charles, thanks for adding the controversy section. Is it possible to add a link to this forum where educators, parents, and students have expressed their comments about this controversy?

http://educationforum.ipbhost.com/index.php?showtopic=9029

Short summary of the position: the article was started March 2006 by an IT teacher at the IST (as far as we know). This brings the article within the guideline

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:Conflict_of_interest

on 'conflict of interest' of Wikipedia editors. This covers most of the ground (and actually cuts both ways). To be fair, this guideline was only put together six months later.

It does make the point clearly that edits by employees or others acting for an institution are deprecated, when the article is immediately about their employer or client. It also indicates that creating an article about an institution or company is double-edged: critical material may be posted. Further, the creation of an article doesn't confer any sort of control or ownership. What is more, a declaration of interest doesn't mean that one is entitled then to be an 'advocate' on one side. What is well within the guideline is the removal of inadequately sourced defamatory material.

The section on the same guideline entitled 'Campaigning' would make it difficult for someone running a campaign on one side of an issue to contribute successfully. Ideally, in a controversy, partisan editing is confined to the Talk page, and third parties make a version incorporating factual corrections and expansions.

The position right now at

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/International...ool_of_Toulouse

is that there is a short 'Controversy' section with one external link to an open letter in the Jones-Nerzic case. The path to this situation can be followed in the Page History: not the ideal way to get there, but the recent editing has largely been co-operative.

Edited by Charles Matthews
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Please sign in to comment

You will be able to leave a comment after signing in



Sign In Now
 Share

×
×
  • Create New...