Raising kids – the Gove way

I’m sure by now that you have all heard about Michael Gove and his fantastic idea of children attending school for 10 hours a day!

It’s great isn’t it? We can pack our kids off and not have to worry about not seeing them for a whole day, then as soon as they are home they can go straight to bed. I won’t have to interact with them at all… I wonder if they will introduce 7 days a week schooling? It’s not like we really want to spend time with our children is it? Isn’t it our aim as parents to pass them off as soon as possible? To let someone else take care of the kids we decide to create?

Has there ever been such a ridiculous idea like this before?! What’s more shocking is that it’s coming from the Education Secretary – and he actually believes what he says.

I can understand some of the reasonings behind it. They want parents to go to work. There is a shortfall on childcare, so opening schools for 10 hour days, and allowing children from 2 years old to attend, will solve that problem. But will it really?

Will it really solve the problem, or will it just make everything worse? When will children get to spend time with their parents? When will they get to interact with their siblings and other family members? Will this inevitably be the start of the breakdown of the family unit.

Will we one day see kids in full-time education and boarding from the age of 2 until 18. An institution. Where they will have no contact with their parents apart from the odd few hours here and there. The rest of the time they are conditioned to do what the Government wants them to do. They will learn what the Government wants them to learn. They will be products of the Government. Unnutured. Unloved.

I find it shocking that we have people in control of our Government who do not have a clue about reality. Do they really think that everything will be ok if they take children away from their parents for 50 hours a week? What about the children who do after school activities already? That’s extra hours away there too.

Gove is supposedly doing this for our children’s welfare. How can it be in the children’s best interests to be away from their parents for so long? I know that there are some families who are disadvantaged. Who don’t love and nurture their kids, but is it really necessary to tar all parents with the same brush? To assume that taking our children away is the best option? Surely working with those families who struggle is the best option.

And then there are the teachers. Teachers are striking now over pay and pensions and working hours. They work long hours already. Many staying late after school marking papers, working at home in the evenings and weekends, for no extra pay. How are they going to feel when they will be looking after kids for 50 hours a week – PLUS the extra work they will have to complete on top?

If Mr Gove gets his way (which I am sincerely hoping he doesn’t and that he will be out before he tries enforcing this), we will end up with a society in which family units no longer exist. Where the children simply spend most of their life in an education system with a curriculum designed to fit certain ages, not stages.

The more I learn from reading articles, chatting to others and from my own children’s schooling – the more I am realising that education is not a one size fits all. Children learn at different speeds in all aspects. Some pick things up really quickly, others need a bit more time and teaching. Some excel in all subjects, where others have specific subjects that they are amazing at, and others where they struggle  – and yet they are expected to all be on a level par. They are all expected to hit the ‘average’ line – when not everyone is average!

The more I think about this ridiculous scheme and the way our education system is going – the more inclined I am to home educate my children.

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5 Comments

  1. jenny
    February 4, 2014 / 2:30 pm

    Also kids tend to be tired and hard to motivate last lessons- they are ready to have a break, extending it wont do them any good health wise 🙁 there will be a shortfall of teachers as many wont last/cope- another great idea from gove, cant wait for the day he leaves office.

    • February 5, 2014 / 9:27 am

      Exactly Jenny – would they still be required to complete homework also? I struggle as it is to get my 2 school age children to do their reading/spellings/home learning of an evening as it is because they are tired from a ‘normal’ day at school!

  2. Gemma
    February 5, 2014 / 9:18 am

    What a great post! I realise many families don’t have a close family unit, but my children are lucky enough to have grandparents, aunties, uncles and cousins all living in the same village! I love and nurture the relationships and bonds they make with our wider family and feel that ‘education’ does start at home and it goes far beyond what they also learn in the classroom. Through relationships they build with their family they learn important life lessons all the time.

    • February 5, 2014 / 9:29 am

      We do not have a large extended family, but I can still see that if this came in it would affect the children’s relationship with their Grandad and Great Nan.
      I completely agree that learning goes far beyond school. If Gove gets his way it will be a huge breakdown for families.

  3. October 20, 2014 / 3:16 pm

    I see this pre-dates Goves retirement from office thankfully, but Government seems set on continuing this one size fits all policy. From my school reports here bit.ly/1tBgDnp you can see how I fitted in – not – although when i did perform excellently, it often went unremarked. Well done for highlighting this problem.