Thursday, September 01, 2005


You can use the f-word in class (but only five times)

A secondary school is to allow pupils to swear at teachers - as long as they don't do so more than five times in a lesson. A running tally of how many times the f-word has been used will be kept on the board. If a class goes over the limit, they will be 'spoken' to at the end of the lesson. The astonishing policy, which the school says will improve the behaviour of pupils, was condemned by parents' groups and MPs yesterday. They warned it would backfire. Parents were advised of the plan, which comes into effect when term starts next week, in a letter from the Weavers School in Wellingborough, Northamptonshire.

Assistant headmaster Richard White said the policy was aimed at 15 and 16-year-olds in two classes which are considered troublesome. "Within each lesson the teacher will initially tolerate (although not condone) the use of the f-word (or derivatives) five times and these will be tallied on the board so all students can see the running score," he wrote in the letter "Over this number the class will be spoken to by the teacher at the end of the lesson."

Parents called the rule 'wholly irresponsible and ludicrous'. "This appears to be a misguided attempt to speak to kids on their own level," said the father of one pupil. Nick Seaton, chairman of the Campaign for Real Education, said: "In these sort of situations teachers should be setting clear principles of 'do and don't'. "They should not be compromising in an apparent attempt to please the pupils. This will send out completely the wrong message. "Youngsters will play up to this and ensure they use their five goes, demeaning the authority of the teacher."

Tory MP Ann Widdecombe said the policy was based on 'Alice in Wonderland reasoning'. "What next?" she asked. "Do we allow people to speed five times or burgle five times? You don't improve something by allowing it, you improve something by discouraging it."

The 1,130-pupil school, which was criticised as 'not effective' by Ofsted inspectors last November, also plans to send 'praise postcards' to the parents of children who do not swear and who turn up on time for lessons. Headmaster Alan Large said he had received no complaints about the policy. "The reality is that the fword is part of these young adults' everyday language," he said. "As a temporary policy we are giving them a bit of leeway, but want them to think about the way they talk and how they might do better."



Australian students used to go to Britain to study but after years of Tony Blair's socialism, it is getting to be the other way around

Universities in Australia and New Zealand are to offer thousands of pounds of scholarships to British students who have failed to gain a place in clearing and wish to study abroad, The Times has learnt. Prompted by reports that up to 60,000 school-leavers may fail to gain a university place in Britain this year because of the rush to avoid 3,000 pound top-up fees, seven universities from Queensland to Canterbury have pledged financial assistance. Annual undergraduate fees usually range between 4,100 pounds and 5,400 pounds. But with a lower cost of living, academics say that it is now academically and financially worthwhile for British students to study in the southern hemisphere.

"Tuition fees are the biggest change British universities have had in years," Chris Madden, pro-Vice Chancellor of Griffith University in Queensland. "Before they were importers, but now with tuition fees, and given the exchange rates, the cost of studying here is not much more than staying at home." Griffith University, which has 30,000 students of which 7,000 are international, is offering a full scholarship for tuition fees, which is open to all except medical students.

Gemma Shaw, 21, from Ipswich has just returned from a six-month exchange in psychology at Griffith. She is about to enter her final year at Oxford Brookes and said that in spite of the cost of flights, living next to Surfers' Paradise was cheaper than Oxford and there was a far stronger sense of service to students in Queensland. She said: "I had an amazing apartment on the beach and we all paid 45 pounds a week each, compared to my tiny room in Oxford for 80 pounds." She travelled around the country over the holidays and worked as a waitress twice a week during the term to pay her way.

Last year about 1,400 British students chose to study in New Zealand and Australia. Many were attracted to courses, such as dentistry, veterinary science and physiotherapy, that are oversubscribed at home. Exchange students pay no more than they would to their own university, but those studying abroad pay a year's fees upfront in order to qualify for a place and a student visa.

Australia introduced university tuition fees in 1973, but now Macquarie University, Curtin University of Technology, Tasmania University, Newcastle University, James Cook and the University of Canterbury in New Zealand, are all offering scholarships to lure British students. Macquarie, Newcastle and Tasmania are all ranked in the Shanghai Jiao Tang top 500 of world universities.

Sarah McCulloch, 36, moved with her husband and three children to Tasmania to take a degree in education. The qualification is identical to that in England. "International students come a week before term starts, so that they can show you around, take you on day trips and to barbecues, so that no one feels left out," she said. "They make a real effort for you to get to know the Australian way of life here and it goes on all year."

The academic year in the southern hemisphere starts in February and is divided into two semesters, the first running until late June and the second from late July until November. Each scholarship is based on academic merit and applications must be made by late October. For help, students should consult the Study Options website (, a free advice service.

Applicants must be British citizens over 18, holding A levels or the International Baccalaureate. The cost of accomodation, travel and living expenses must all be met by the student. There is no loan available for international students, however, so many will have to look for support from parents, or elsewhere.

More here


For greatest efficiency, lowest cost and maximum choice, ALL schools should be privately owned and run -- with government-paid vouchers for the poor and minimal regulation.

The NEA and similar unions worldwide believe that children should be thoroughly indoctrinated with Green/Left, feminist/homosexual ideology but the "3 R's" are something that kids should just be allowed to "discover"

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