Sunday, June 03, 2018

Trust in me ...

Someone once said to me, “there’s nothing that can’t be cured by rubbing money on it.” I can’t  remember the context but I do remember thinking how astute an observation this was.

With the benefit of 20 odd years of life between the statement and today, I realise now that there’s a big difference between a cure and a short term remedy.

In this article, two inputs were seen to have the greatest impact on educational outcomes: teachers’ pay and student:teacher ratios but not  necessarily in the way one might think. There is, for example, an optimum class size below which things stop working. Similarly, there is an optimum salary beyond which you start attracting the wrong people.

Given that such knowledge exists, it’s incredibly frustrating to see governments tipping money into a huge pit promoting populist agendas but which have a limited/negligible impact.

I’m not demanding greater pay. I’m not demanding anything beyond a bit more thought; I’m fed up of being given things by well-meaning political types who think they can solve things by throwing money at them. I wouldn't mind if they asked us what we wanted.

My answer? Trust in me to do what I’ve been trained to do.

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