The Blog of
Nadine Dorries
Thank you John
Posted Sunday, 27 May 2007 at 13:54

I wasn'g going to blog today. I  have re-posted my blog on grammar schools from last week however, the reason being this. People asked me why I had used the song 'Another brick in the wall' and what it meant,and I replied that it was symbolic. It was about politicians errecting a wall between themselves and the electorate and how this policy was simply adding another brick to the wall. Absolutley no-one got it. Not one person understood what I was talking about, until this morning. I was thrilled when a blogger sent in this;

John said:

I hope you don't mind my commenting on this past blog but I have been away and just playing catch up.Referring to Pink Floyd, I watched the BBC's 7 ages of rock last night which featured them.As part of their stage performance they would gradually build up a wall between themselves and the audience (hence the 'another brick in the wall' song).And now you mention them in this blog.It struck me that politicians have done much the same over many years, insulating themselves from the public, never understanding what truly happens in the real world.That was until a certain lady from Liverpool honoured us by being our MP, and brick by brick is taking down that barrier by means such as this blog and simple things as a few kind words and deeds.Thankyou Liverpool Lady;

Thank you John, at least one person understands me!

'Another Brick in the Wall'

How many kids have sat on the school wall and sang that, as their teachers drove into the car park, without knowing what they were singing?

I have felt both frustrated and upset over the last few days as I heard the words ‘no selection by academic ability’ banded around the House of Commons as a throw away line - as though such a statement had no future consequences.

Just for the record, can I state that I do not want to see a return to grammar schools as we knew them. I, like most people who have thought about education, know that the flip side to the grammar system was the secondary modern school, such as the one I went to. In that year the Labour party closed down grammars and local education authorities ceased to pay travel costs for pupils to attend schools out of the area.

My secondary modern became a comprehensive overnight. I watched the workmen change the board as I daydreamed from the ROSLA block window. Out came the secondary modern sign and in went the shiny large placard pronouncing us as the first comprehensive in Liverpool.

A bright new sign, the same dull future - for most of us.

A secondary modern would always struggle, it was by definition, the school where the non-academics went, they had all gone to the grammar and there was absolutley no provision for those who had skills of any kind and had not made it onto the academic s spring board out of poverty . When the system changed, those who would have gone to the grammar school found themselves drowning in mixed ability un-taught, confused groups. Does it mean, because of past Labour party errors and stigma, we throw the academic baby out with the bathwater?

The future reliance on the untried, untested, highly selective, academies worries me. Academies have no legal obligation to take children with special needs which means such children attend the nearest comprehensive.

In one comprehensive school in London, almost 60% of its children have special needs, whereas the city academy, just a few hundred yards away, has none; a two tier system - sound familiar?

Academies do however select by aptitude. I am waiting for just one person to explain why it’s OK to select a child by skill or aptitude, for e.g. art , but if that aptitude is one for maths, it’s suddenly a dirty word and out of the equation.

What is wrong with saying that if we are going to have specialist academies, we have ones which specialise in academia also? Academic academies, now there’s a thought.

It is wrong to make the statement ‘no selection by academic ability’ just plain damn wrong. We should revere and encourage all qualities in our children, all should have equal status. There should be no snobbery attached to any skill or ability.

The decision not to select by academic ability also re-enforces the difference between independent schools and the state system, and in itself holds a magnifying glass over the chasm of difference between the two systems.

If you are fortunate enough to be able to send your child to an independent school you will have no chance of success if he or she is not able at maths, English, science, Latin, and, the classics.

So where does that leave the future for all? Who will be the bankers, the stockbrokers, the surgeons, scientists, and, the decision makers of tomorrow?

Well, given that the overwhelming number of children who are studying science at university are from the independent sector, regrettably, I think we know the answer.

If we are to continue the process of no academic selection for the brightest kids from the poorest backgrounds, the future remains very firmly in the hands of those who are born to rule, or at least think they are.

No dark sarcasm in the classroom?

No, not in the classroom, you will find that here in Parliament; education policy has just become ‘another brick in the wall.' Click Here For The Lyrics

 
 
 
Nadine said:
Responded: Sunday, 27 May 2007
Sorry about the type face. 'Mr brakes ' is on holiday, and you know I am no tecchy - thats boys stuff!
 
 
Anonymous said:
Responded: Sunday, 27 May 2007
Get you John!
 
 
John said:
Responded: Sunday, 27 May 2007
Wow! Having just read your Life or Death blog and comments and being in sad mode, I then came across this.Made my week! but you really shouldn't thank me it's you who deserve all the thanks.
 
 
Anonymous said:
Responded: Sunday, 27 May 2007
I've got to say this Nadine, your blogs and comments are better than SEX and now I get to have the 'thrill' more than once a month!
 
 
Sam, Eversholt said:
Responded: Sunday, 27 May 2007
Didn't read this in the week. It had not crossed my mind that there are such obvious differences between the two systems.
 
 
Anonymous said:
Responded: Sunday, 27 May 2007
Perhaps then Nadine should blog seven days a week to improve all our sex lives!
 
 
Paul said:
Responded: Sunday, 27 May 2007
I second that Anon. Seven days would be pure heaven!
 
 
Anonymous said:
Responded: Sunday, 27 May 2007
Motion carried anonymously. Nice to see democracy in action.
 
 
Mike H said:
Responded: Sunday, 27 May 2007
Steady, chaps! Let's not push this too far. Much as I would like to be able to read new stuff on Nadine's blog every day, the poor girl needs to have a day off now and again. If we push it too far, she might be tempted to 'outsource' her blog writing just to get a few hours to herself. You don't want to start reading the ramblings of some sort of Robo-Nadine, do you? ;-)
 
 
Swrrper said:
Responded: Sunday, 27 May 2007
Labour have been slowly suffocating this nation for years with stealth taxes and stupid unworkable laws. These proposed new stop and search laws are completely insane.we need a nurse to administer oxygen! Quickly!
 
 
Anonymous said:
Responded: Sunday, 27 May 2007
Sorry Mike this democratic decision was carried out based on Labour values. i.e. an idle thought turned into law faster than the speed of common sense.
 
 
Sweeper said:
Responded: Sunday, 27 May 2007
Mike, this lady could put her shopping list on here and we would analyze it!
 
 
Dave said:
Responded: Sunday, 27 May 2007
Yes, and whilst you are doing that Sweeper, I could go to Waitrose and get it for her.
 
 
James said:
Responded: Sunday, 27 May 2007
I'm glad John made Nadine happy. What a week she has had. Now a lady of a certain age, an award and her team coming second. Then upset and frustrated with frontbenchers.Lets hope the lady smiles again!
 
 
Paul said:
Responded: Sunday, 27 May 2007
This lady should be on the frontbench. What qualifications does Dave have? A bit of PR at Carlton TV. At least Nadine has been at the 'coal face' and can talk it straight and true.
 
 
John said:
Responded: Sunday, 27 May 2007
I agree with you Mike H, Nadine should rest from blogging for at least a month. Leaving today's blog on, of course. Hey, but I'm biased!
 
 
James said:
Responded: Sunday, 27 May 2007
Yes, perhaps we should all give Nadine a break and stop commenting. It is a Sunday evenning afterall.
 
 
Mike H said:
Responded: Sunday, 27 May 2007
A month with no blog! What sort of heretic are you, John? :-) Far better to request a signed copy that you can frame and hang on your wall, then the rest of us can get our blog-fix as usual.
 
 
Paul said:
Responded: Sunday, 27 May 2007
Brown was a TV journalist. Non-reality TV no doubt. It scares you to death when you consider these people can make daily decisions which affect 60 mill Brits, to say nothing of the rest of the world.
 
 
john said:
Responded: Sunday, 27 May 2007
Sorry Mike, my ego is extremely inflated at this time,my head is getting larger by the minute and my pulse is racing! Give me my 15 minutes of fame today and then I promise to act dumb and mis-understanding with every Nadine blog from now on. And for god's sake don't talk about sex cos in my state, who knows what could happen.
 
 
Sweeper said:
Responded: Sunday, 27 May 2007
I read that info in that Blair's Fantasy Island article in the paper today.It made a lot of sense.
 
 
Angela said:
Responded: Sunday, 27 May 2007
John, I'd let you have a genuine Nadine autograph of mine but that may be breaking the FOI laws!
 
 
Victor NW Kent said:
Responded: Monday, 28 May 2007
Nadine, I think the average voter is becoming tired of education initiatives that fail, excuses for taxation or "charges", NHS boom or bust. Please tell us why politicians, or rather Ministers, cannot stop legislation and begin managing? The voter is disaffected as there is an endless stream of initiatives and legislation that defy common-sense.
 
 
 
Contact Nadine
Nadine Dorries MP
House of Commons
London SW1A 0AA
via e-mail at: nadine.dorries.mp@parliament.uk
or Telephone on 020 7219 5928

 
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