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The Pursuit of Excellence - SHOCK TREATMENT!

May 25th, 2010

Some things sadden me. Some things appall me. In a comment on my last post Crina wrote ‘But I believe the point I failed to make was that excellence will always be a minority, because most people are not interested in promoting it.’ This saddens me. It should worry you.

David Gale wrote ‘The words of our local Director of Children’s Services still ring in my ears. Gifted children are excluded from our Inclusion Strategy.’ This appalls me.

Chris Woodhead wrote in his weekly column in the Sunday Times, ‘Earlier this year ministers decided to stop funding the gifted and talented programme in order to divert funds to the ‘disadvantaged.’ This also appalls me.

Recently a retired teacher said to me that one reason why girls were doing better than boys today was that boys ridiculed those in their class who were “swots”.

The following was a part of OFSTED’s glowing report on the special school that I was a governor of for many years. ‘…a good school with many outstanding features… pupils in the school are highly motivated, eager to learn and responsive to the high expectations of their teachers…. the School’s ethos is very positive.’  It didn’t stop the local authority wanting to close it. The parents successfully fought to keep it open.

But over a 100 special schools were closed, many of them I am sure just as excellent.

Some people actually begrudge excellence, are jealous of it. They label it as elitism when it is nothing of the sort.

This post is written for the benefit of all those who think that the pursuit of excellence is either a complete waste of time or positively wrong because it makes society less equal.