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10 Educational Trends I Really Hope I Don’t See Again This Year

Mike Stuchbery could happily take whatever the academic year throws at him – so long as none of these are involved...

  • 10 Educational Trends I Really Hope I Don’t See Again This Year

1. Photos of marking on social media

10 Educational Trends I Really Hope I Don’t See Again This Year

We get it. You’ve spent 30 of the last 48 weekend hours powering through set after set of Year 9 English books. Good for you. You’re an inspiration. You’ll be HOD in less than two years.

Now don’t go making the rest of us feeling awful, with your incredibly neat handwriting and ‘What Went Well’s and ‘Even Better If’s…

2. Countless educational acronyms

10 Educational Trends I Really Hope I Don’t See Again This Year

...though you can take your WWWs and EBIs (and your ‘PEEL’s, ‘RAG ratings’ and ‘3LOP’s while you’re at it) and stick them where the sun don’t shine. Half of us don’t understand what you’re talking about, while the other half quietly seethe with white hot anger every time you drop one of these revolting word-crimes in a staff meeting.

3. 'Superheads' sending kids home over uniform infractions

10 Educational Trends I Really Hope I Don’t See Again This Year

Real people – those outside of teaching – don’t think these head teachers are hard. They think they’re petty martinets, drunk on what little power they have. They’re not enforcing standards, they’re denying kids an education.

Journalists, this isn’t news. Stop giving these people oxygen.

4. 'Boarding passes' and 'exit tickets'

10 Educational Trends I Really Hope I Don’t See Again This Year

The kids don’t care that you’ve spent until 1am last night perfectly replicating a British Airways boarding pass. They’ve probably never seen one. Just ask them a question and get them to write an answer in their book. Bam. Done.

5. Twitter teacher spats

10 Educational Trends I Really Hope I Don’t See Again This Year

Whether you’re a ‘Trad’ or a ‘Prog’ hurling invective at those you think are ruining British education, you’re actually scaring off a heck of a lot of young educators.

Share pedagogy, share resources, leave the biffo for DMs (sorry, ‘direct messages’)...

  Image via Provocateur Communications

6. Pokemon Go-themed activities

10 Educational Trends I Really Hope I Don’t See Again This Year

It’s over already. You’re just marking yourself out as deeply, deeply uncool, daddio.

7. Weekend revision

10 Educational Trends I Really Hope I Don’t See Again This Year

Don’t we see these kids enough? Why sacrifice part of our – and their – weekends for an outcome unsupported by research? Surely teachers teach more effectively and students recall readily when they’re well-rested?

If you’re just doing it because SLT asked you to, have a long hard think about your workplace.

8. 'A letter to my Year 6s'...

10 Educational Trends I Really Hope I Don’t See Again This Year

Yes, we’re all quite aware of how imaginative, creative, caring and inquisitive your Year 6 class has been. We know SATs are bad. The children would be undoubtedly be better jumping in puddles and climbing trees. We’ve heard it all before.

9. Open letters to politician X

10 Educational Trends I Really Hope I Don’t See Again This Year

Politician X is too busy being treated to lavish dinners by dastardly publishing conglomerates and cribbing education policies from whoever’s top of the PISA tables to read your WordPress blog about workload.

10. The data cult

10 Educational Trends I Really Hope I Don’t See Again This Year

Dammit, man, we’re teachers, not accountants! We don’t need a data capture every four weeks! Nobody does!

Hundreds of hours each year spent entering grades (and sub-grades) into reporting software could be freed up for CPD, lesson planning and extra-curricular activities if schools would just free themselves from their data addiction. Less reporting intervals with more detail on the actual report – that’s the ticket.

So, what are the things you don’t you want to see in education over the next school year?...

Mike Stuchbery has spent the last 13 years teaching English, history and geography across Australia, Germany and the UK, and now works in heritage education, where he is looking for his next big challenge. For more information, visit www.mikestuchbery.com or follow @MrMStuchbery

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