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  1. #61
    Are they still in denial about the teacher shortage?


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  3. #62
    @hibs.net private member JimBHibees's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by steakbake View Post
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    I'd agree with that in many ways. I've worked in education and studied it to a fairly mind numbing degree.

    One of the things that I very much believe and is backed up with data, is about human capital. More accurately, intergenerational transfer of human capital. In short, how families/parents/carers prepare kids with a set of tools, skills and values for engaging in their own development.

    Very generally, middle to high income parents have no problems in doing this. It's usually what has made them comparatively 'affluent' in the first place and it transfers, more or less to their kids.

    There is a tipping point where if there's too much affluence, there is complacency - which is why some incredibly wealthy countries underperform in education.

    Anyway, these are the kind of folks who are very hard to pin down because they are constantly taking their kids from music class, to sports activities, to tutors, to this, that and the other. The kind that will read a bedtime story. That's not to say that doesn't happen in low income households, but its definitely not a common feature.

    On the flip side, we've seen without a doubt an increase in poverty over the past 10-15 years. You have a large and growing group of people who themselves, have experienced very little transfer of human capital and skills themselves - what chance do they have to pass something on to their kids?

    They don't have the disposable income, even if they had the inclination to, to send kids to those same kind of activities.

    Small measures can make a big difference. When I was researching this, I happened to watch 'Searching for Sugarman'. There's a bit in it which is exactly what I'm talking about. It's where Sixto Rodriguez' daughter is talking about her upbringing.

    Here was a guy who was a general labourer in Detroit, scratching a living via odd jobs: very poor in a very poor part of the US. But the time he spent with his kids was invariably taking them to free stuff - museums, art galleries and the like: on a mission. It's not uncommon to see that in action, particularly in migrant families where the previous generation has a skill, a drive or a determination to move somewhere (economic migration) and that can be more often than not, transferable to their kids.

    It's no accident that, for example, kids of Indian and Chinese migrants generally outperform 'white' kids. It's not some conspiracy against the white man as the Daily Mail would have people believe. It is the transfer of human capital from generation to generation in action.

    Kids from poor backgrounds do of course excel, but there is normally a factor there - a very supportive parent or relative, a particularly strong role model, a community group which gives them a push-along against the current which would normally pull them in a different direction.

    There are others however, whose parents don't have the means, the experience or the 'capital' to bring about that same generational transformation.

    So, in short, poverty is hereditary. As is wealth, to a greater or lesser degree.

    Poverty has increased over the past 10-15 years - particularly child poverty. CPAG data - 3.9mil kids live in poverty in the UK. It rose by 0.5mil between 2011 and 2013. Last year alone, it rose by 0.25mil. By 2020, it is expected to increase by 50% overall. Man, what chance do people have?

    That's why, for example, the NHS have programmes to teach parents to teach their kids how to brush their teeth - doing so has reduced dental problems in children under 5 dramatically. That's why they are also investing in basic literacy schemes for parents, or the adverts that encourage parents to read to kids - if the parents don't know, how the hell should the kids? It's partly why young offenders do get trips to zoos, outward bound programmes and the like - and necessarily so. The state is loco parentis for those kids and they would be failing in their duty to not provide that kind of enrichment, I suppose you'd call it.

    Some may find that bizarre that such schemes exist yet they do for reasons of poverty reduction. However, they are often poorly funded, small scale pilots and easily pilloried in the media. "Look at what the government has spent money on now..." kind of stuff. Some have quite a quick impact - the tooth brushing project is a recent example which had results in 1-2 years, but some of the other poverty reduction projects need a long time for results to be seen.

    It's about aiming an improvement in people's conditions as human beings. It's also about properly investing in education, teacher training, properly accepting that policies take time to work through.

    And yes, when people get worked up about art galleries and museums shortening their hours or becoming a paid-for activity, why it is important to petition that, see it as the bad thing that it is and stop them being a preserve for those who already inclined to that in the first place.

    Sorry for the long post/rant - but I suppose I should do something with my degree, even if it is a thought-post on the Holy Ground!
    Really interesting thanks for sharing that.

  4. #63
    Testimonial Due IndieHibby's Avatar
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    This is a genuine question for steakbake, or indeed others:

    What is good about CfE?

    I have an interest in the subject and have only really heard negative things. Would really appreciate the time anyone can give to an answer.

    Cheers

  5. #64
    Coaching Staff hibsbollah's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by steakbake View Post
    This quote is hidden because you are ignoring this member. Show Quote
    I'd agree with that in many ways. I've worked in education and studied it to a fairly mind numbing degree.

    One of the things that I very much believe and is backed up with data, is about human capital. More accurately, intergenerational transfer of human capital. In short, how families/parents/carers prepare kids with a set of tools, skills and values for engaging in their own development.

    Very generally, middle to high income parents have no problems in doing this. It's usually what has made them comparatively 'affluent' in the first place and it transfers, more or less to their kids.

    There is a tipping point where if there's too much affluence, there is complacency - which is why some incredibly wealthy countries underperform in education.

    Anyway, these are the kind of folks who are very hard to pin down because they are constantly taking their kids from music class, to sports activities, to tutors, to this, that and the other. The kind that will read a bedtime story. That's not to say that doesn't happen in low income households, but its definitely not a common feature.

    On the flip side, we've seen without a doubt an increase in poverty over the past 10-15 years. You have a large and growing group of people who themselves, have experienced very little transfer of human capital and skills themselves - what chance do they have to pass something on to their kids?

    They don't have the disposable income, even if they had the inclination to, to send kids to those same kind of activities.

    Small measures can make a big difference. When I was researching this, I happened to watch 'Searching for Sugarman'. There's a bit in it which is exactly what I'm talking about. It's where Sixto Rodriguez' daughter is talking about her upbringing.

    Here was a guy who was a general labourer in Detroit, scratching a living via odd jobs: very poor in a very poor part of the US. But the time he spent with his kids was invariably taking them to free stuff - museums, art galleries and the like: on a mission. It's not uncommon to see that in action, particularly in migrant families where the previous generation has a skill, a drive or a determination to move somewhere (economic migration) and that can be more often than not, transferable to their kids.

    It's no accident that, for example, kids of Indian and Chinese migrants generally outperform 'white' kids. It's not some conspiracy against the white man as the Daily Mail would have people believe. It is the transfer of human capital from generation to generation in action.

    Kids from poor backgrounds do of course excel, but there is normally a factor there - a very supportive parent or relative, a particularly strong role model, a community group which gives them a push-along against the current which would normally pull them in a different direction.

    There are others however, whose parents don't have the means, the experience or the 'capital' to bring about that same generational transformation.

    So, in short, poverty is hereditary. As is wealth, to a greater or lesser degree.

    Poverty has increased over the past 10-15 years - particularly child poverty. CPAG data - 3.9mil kids live in poverty in the UK. It rose by 0.5mil between 2011 and 2013. Last year alone, it rose by 0.25mil. By 2020, it is expected to increase by 50% overall. Man, what chance do people have?

    That's why, for example, the NHS have programmes to teach parents to teach their kids how to brush their teeth - doing so has reduced dental problems in children under 5 dramatically. That's why they are also investing in basic literacy schemes for parents, or the adverts that encourage parents to read to kids - if the parents don't know, how the hell should the kids? It's partly why young offenders do get trips to zoos, outward bound programmes and the like - and necessarily so. The state is loco parentis for those kids and they would be failing in their duty to not provide that kind of enrichment, I suppose you'd call it.

    Some may find that bizarre that such schemes exist yet they do for reasons of poverty reduction. However, they are often poorly funded, small scale pilots and easily pilloried in the media. "Look at what the government has spent money on now..." kind of stuff. Some have quite a quick impact - the tooth brushing project is a recent example which had results in 1-2 years, but some of the other poverty reduction projects need a long time for results to be seen.

    It's about aiming an improvement in people's conditions as human beings. It's also about properly investing in education, teacher training, properly accepting that policies take time to work through.

    And yes, when people get worked up about art galleries and museums shortening their hours or becoming a paid-for activity, why it is important to petition that, see it as the bad thing that it is and stop them being a preserve for those who already inclined to that in the first place.

    Sorry for the long post/rant - but I suppose I should do something with my degree, even if it is a thought-post on the Holy Ground!
    Excellent post and I think you're absolutely right about entrenched problems in low income households. Ive done similar work on worklessness in the past, and the depressing conclusion is that there is an intergenerational culture being passed down from father to child of not being in work, on incapacity benefits or whatever, and poverty reduction or retraining projects have little short term impact because the most basic skills are lacking, how to tie a tie, brush your teeth, get out of bed when the alarm clock goes. Making a kid go to a course learning Excel isn't going to make the kid more employable because his basic skills aren't there. As you put it, there has been no investment in human capital.

    It seems in education, housing and employment everything is in place to make the poorer in society worse off and the divide is going to widen.

  6. #65
    Quote Originally Posted by hibsbollah View Post
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    Excellent post and I think you're absolutely right about entrenched problems in low income households. Ive done similar work on worklessness in the past, and the depressing conclusion is that there is an intergenerational culture being passed down from father to child of not being in work, on incapacity benefits or whatever, and poverty reduction or retraining projects have little short term impact because the most basic skills are lacking, how to tie a tie, brush your teeth, get out of bed when the alarm clock goes. Making a kid go to a course learning Excel isn't going to make the kid more employable because his basic skills aren't there. As you put it, there has been no investment in human capital.

    It seems in education, housing and employment everything is in place to make the poorer in society worse off and the divide is going to widen.
    I agree with 99% of your post mate. The only bit I struggle with is the wording of the last sentence, as I feel there is a lot of work aimed at reducing the gap, such as the TOiL programme Port of Leith housing assoc run. A lot of focus on improving basic skills to get people 'work ready'.

    Imo, positive change has to be a 2 way process involving not just individuals but communities too, so that people feel able to speak out and offer advice about parenting styles, antisocial behaviour etc etc. That has to come from the bottom up as well as top down.
    Last edited by beensaidbefore; 08-12-2016 at 05:53 PM.

  7. #66
    Coaching Staff hibsbollah's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by beensaidbefore View Post
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    I agree with 99% of your post mate. The only bit I struggle with is the wording of the last sentence, as I feel there is a lot of work aimed at reducing the gap, such as the TOiL programme Port of Leith housing assoc run. A lot of focus on improving basic skills to get people 'work ready'.

    Imo, positive change has to be a 2 way process involving not just individuals but communities too, so that people feel able to speak out and offer advice about parenting styles, antisocial behaviour etc etc. That has to come from the bottom up as well as top down.

    To qualify that, my experience is mostly south of the border. There is a broader consensus for wealth redistribution and worklessness programmes up here, which is a good thing. Post Blair the UK Govts policy is not to have a policy.

  8. #67
    Quote Originally Posted by hibsbollah View Post
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    To qualify that, my experience is mostly south of the border. There is a broader consensus for wealth redistribution and worklessness programmes up here, which is a good thing. Post Blair the UK Govts policy is not to have a policy.
    I think you touch on an interesting point, and I think that is why there is such a concern that under the SNP things are not hugely different than down south, possibly even worse according to this recent report. I, amongst other, thought the differences in the education system here and local governmental control could have benefitted the education system better than it seems to have.

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