SARAH SMITH UK teacher (and English graduate) who admits: I’m illiterate blames liberal education dogmas for creating a generation of hopelessly ill-equipped teachers

SARAH SMITH  UK teacher (and English graduate) who admits: I’m illiterate blames liberal education dogmas for creating a generation of hopelessly ill-equipped teachers

This is a scorching indictment of Liberalism that not only applies across the pond but also her in America. Our education system is being dumbed down to the point we’re graduating ill-equipped people for a 21st century world.


teacherMy hands were feeling clammy and beads of sweat broke out under my collar as I shifted nervously in my seat. It was parents’ evening reports the Daily Mail.

As a teacher with six years’ experience, you might imagine that I would have been in my element as I chatted about the eight-year-olds in my charge and offered their parents encouragement and advice.

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Instead I was consumed with embarrassment. And no wonder. The father opposite me — a lawyer — was looking at me as if I was dirt under his shoe.

I had been telling him about the new drive to improve literacy standards in our school when he had interrupted me.

‘Can you repeat what you just said?’ he said. ‘I’m not sure I could possibly have heard you correctly.’

I had no idea why he was getting so agitated. To humour him, I repeated slowly: ‘I said that me and the headmistress are doing all we can to improve standards.’

I might as well have told him that we were planning to bring back the birch. Throwing his hands up in the air, he launched into a tirade that left me red hot with shame.

‘Me and the headmistress?’ he ranted. ‘Don’t you know it should be: “The headmistress and I”? How can you call yourself a teacher when your grammar is so poor?’

I wanted the ground to swallow me up. Many years later, I still feel there was no excuse for his rudeness, but I can understand why he was so angry. I’d feel the same if a child of mine was being taught by a teacher like me.

And the shocking truth is that there are thousands of teachers in schools the length and breadth of the country who are just like me.

We have degrees in English from respectable universities, yet wouldn’t know a subjective pronoun from an objective one if it hit us in the face.

I joined the profession in 2005 and quit last year, eventually worn down and depressed at seeing a generation of schoolchildren let down by an education system that not only allows woefully ill-prepared teachers like me into the job, but doesn’t pick up on our failings.

For the truth is that I had no idea I had said anything untoward that day. And most of my colleagues — experienced, highly qualified teachers in their 30s and 40s — wouldn’t have known either.

The products of a liberal education system that eschewed the ‘rules’ of the English language for trendy educational methods, we were as bemused as the children we taught. So how on earth are teachers going to deliver the Government’s demanding new school curriculum with its emphasis on grammar?

Alice Phillips, the president of the Girls’ Schools Association, caused uproar last week by admitting that when it comes to grammar, even university-educated English teachers like me are at sea.


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Originally posted at The Last Tradition


Samuel Gonzalez

Samuel Gonzalez is the editor-in-chief of The Last Tradition, a blog he started in April 2009. Samuel is one of the top Latino bloggers in the country and his blog has been linked by Gateway Pundit, Right Wing News, Instapundit, Legal Insurrection, American Thinker and other top conservative blogs. He's a strong Reagan conservative, a Rush Limbaugh disciple, an unconventional Evangelical who not only takes on Liberal orthodoxy, but also challenges other so-called soft conservatives afraid to buck political correctness.

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