1 April 2015
Tie a yellow ribbon round the old oak tree.
It's been quiet at the DfE since he left, but Michael Gove has done his time and is set to return to the helm, in a move that will delight many teachers, who have been rather bored these past few months.
A spokesperson for the DfE said that Michael deeply regrets any offence he may have caused to teachers in the past but that Mr. Cameron feels that Michael has spent long enough on the naughty step. Gove has promised that he will be better behaved in future and that he will put his new policies before parliament, or at least someone in in his party, or, failing that, will ask some in the office to read them, if he has written down anything about them.
Even better news is that he has a new raft of policies ready to go when the Conservatives win their next election. Namely:
- Free schools will really be free: anyone, of any age, will be able to turn up and ask to be taught anything they might be interested in. Also, anyone can teach any of the lessons, free from the shackles of training, curriculum, pedagogy and assessment.
- All schools will be selective: Gove has realised his mistake about grammars, because they are mostly academies, are over-subscribed and free from any local accountability or control, they have already started to expand, so Gove will allow all schools to share in this success, even primary schools, with selection using the new baseline tests.This will allow all schools to grow, solving the looming school places crisis.
- Teachers pay will be allowed to rise - as it was during his previous tenure, but while previously there was no funding for it, now there will be even less.
- A new national curriculum called the New National Curriculum, will see radical reforms to teaching history (starts with God's Big Bang in Y1 and reaches Gove's Big Idea at the end of Y11), science (based on the FFF system: length in furlongs, mass in firkins, time in fortnights - for example the speed of light is 1.8026×1012 furlongs/fortnight) and in maths (Y1 children will have to derive a solution to Fermat's last theorem).
- A-levels will be reformed to become so difficult that universities will not be able to use them for selection purposes because the new lowest grade (daleth - grades will be labelled in Phoenician) will only be achievable by the top 0.01% of students and results will not be available until 36 months after sitting the exam. Independent schools will be unaffected by the change.
- Initial teacher training will follow a flipped classroom model, with student teachers receiving their training in schools, trained by pupils, who will ensure that in future, NQTs don't make stupid errors like expecting the class to be silent occasionally, expecting homework to be done on time, or getting themselves locked in the stock cupboard. Behaviour is expected to improve and school performance hit the roof (or something will).
- School accountability will be based on the new School G8 measure, which uses a variation on the idea of destination measures - departure measures: schools who manage to get their pupils out through the school G8 (geddit??) most quickly, go to the top of the pile. This is valuable because it gives students more time to find work, benefitting the economy because, of course, employers can pay them as little as they like.
Reforms are expected to be in place by 1 April 2015.
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