Posts Tagged ‘Political Correctness’

The School Where Clapping is Banned

July 21, 2016
The Elanora public school’s newsletter banned clapping out of ‘respect’ for noise-sensitive students who may now ‘punch the air’ or do ‘silent cheers’. Picture: Elanora Heights Public School


If we keep fashioning school rules to look after the 1% at the expense of the 99%, it will have a dramatic effect on the kids’ general enjoyment of school.

I love to clap. I clap my students all the time. One of my students wrote a recount today that was so funny and perceptive I found myself laughing and clapping throughout the whole thing. The rest of the class were doing the same.

Yes, I am aware that there are students who find loud noises quite difficult, and I obviously care about their needs too. But the reality is, that if you put 25 kids in a room you are going to get noise. Schools are not libraries and shouldn’t have to adopt library etiquette just because some have sound sensitivities.

Schools that look after their 1% need to ensure that their rules don’t inhibit the enjoyment of the 99%, because then you don’t have a school the wider student community can enjoy:


CLAPPING has been banned at a Sydney primary school which has introduced “silent cheering”, “pulling excited faces” and “punching the air” to respect students who are “sensitive to noise”.

The school now only allows its pupils “to conduct a silent cheer” when prompted by teachers and says the practice “reduces fidgeting”.

Elanora Heights Public School, which is on Sydney’s northern beaches, announced its new “silent cheer” policy in its latest school newsletter.

The latest example of a political correctness outbreak in Australian schools, which have banned hugging, singing Christmas carols, celebrating Australia Day and singing the word “black” in the nursery rhyme “baa baa black sheep”.

The ban on clapping at Elanora Heights Primary School emerged on the same day that an exclusive girls school banned teachers from calling “ladies” or “women” in favour of “gender-neutral” terms.

In its July 18 newsletter, the Elanora school has published an item under the headline “Did you know” that “our school has adopted silent cheers at assembly’s” (sic).

“If you’ve been to a school assembly recently, you may have noticed our students doing silent cheers,” the item reads.

“Instead of clapping, the students are free to punch the air, pull excited faces and wriggle about on the spot.

“The practice has been adopted to respect members of our school community who are sensitive to noise.

“When you attend an assembly, teachers will prompt the audience to conduct a silent cheer if it is needed.

“Teachers have also found the silent cheers to be a great way to expend children’s energy and reduce fidgeting.”


Click on the link to read Don’t Blame Teachers for National Anthem Furor

Click on the link to read Stay Away From You Students’ Facebook Pages

Click on the link to read Teacher Claims he Didn’t Think Sex Abuse Was a Crime

Click on the link to read The Classroom Incident that Isn’t Seen as Child Abuse but Actually Is


Stay Away From You Students’ Facebook Pages

July 13, 2014


I know there is a strong argument that Twitter and Facebook are potentially wonderful tools for education, where the teacher can drive education, using the social media outlet that their students are so attached to.

But like with so many different areas, the worst individuals spoil it for everyone else.

In today’s day and age teachers should steer clear from communicating with their students on social media. It is just not appropriate. The fact that some teachers use it for good, is not a convincing argument. It is the few teachers that use for the evil that makes it imperative for teachers to give such contact a wide berth.

It’s stories like this that make it impossible for fair-minded teachers to friend a student on Facebook:

A teacher has been banned from the classroom after a disciplinary body found that he swore in front of pupils and made sexually suggestive and inappropriate remarks to them.

William Richard Jones, who was head of art at Ysgol Friars, a high school at Bangor, Gwynedd, was found guilty of unacceptable professional conduct following a hearing by the General Teaching Council for Wales.

Jones, who was friends with some of his pupils on Facebook, had inappropriate social contact with them and 10 of 11 allegations against him were proven.

Jones admitted that he commented on a photograph of a pupil on Facebook, writing: ‘Beautiful! I wish I was 34 years younger :-)xxxxx.’

And a second pupil said Mr Jones told her she looked ‘gorgeous’ in a photo she had on her mobile phone.


Click on the link to read Teacher Claims he Didn’t Think Sex Abuse Was a Crime

Click on the link to read The Classroom Incident that Isn’t Seen as Child Abuse but Actually Is

Click on the link to read A Cautionary Tale for Frustrated Teachers

Click on the link to read Teacher Sought Dating Advice from Her Fourth Graders

Click on the link to read Teacher Suspended for 10 Days for Grabbing a 6-Year-Old By the Neck (Video)

Click on the link to read Middle School Teacher Gives Student a Lap Dance

The Bizarre Call to Train Teachers Specifically for Left-Handed Students

March 18, 2014


Oh dear! Just when you thought the discourse regarding education was getting rather strange, comes a most odd suggestion.

Apparently, because I haven’t been given specific training about teaching left-handed students, I am risking their self esteem. I wonder why people assume that teachers have an inability to apply common sense to the needs of their students:

Every teacher should be trained to recognise the needs of left handed children, a former minister has said.

Teacher training and the national curriculum should be overhauled so that children are given the space and “correct implements” to achieve the same results as right handed pupils, Peter Luff said.

The current lack of understanding is leaving the “self-esteem and self-worth” of left handed children at risk as they often end up struggling with right handed scissors or having cramped, illegible handwriting because teachers are unaware of their differing needs, he said.

The former Conservative defence minister said children were left feeling “clumsy and awkward” in the classroom and on the sports field and were not being able to reach their full creative potential.

Mr Luff has written to David Laws, the Schools minister, asking him to bring a simple set of guidelines into mandatory teacher training that takes into account the “slightly different needs” of those children who favour their left hand.

Mr Luff told The Telegraph: “If teachers are made to realise that someone is left handed, then maybe there are some things that they would want to do differently than for the rest of the class.

“Using left handed scissors, writing differently, having the mouse on the other side of the computer. In the sports room they could be taught how to use a bat or racquet in a better way.

“There are all sorts of small things which are terribly, terribly easy to put right – it’s just that teachers need to be told as part of their training to look out for those kind of kids and make sure their slightly different needs are addressed thoughtfully in the classroom.

Click on the link to read my post Why Professional Development for Teachers is Often Useless

Click on the link to read my post Finally, a Step Forward in Education

Click on the link to read my post Tips For New Teachers from Experienced Teachers

Click on the link to read, ‘Teachers Trained Very Well to Teach Very Poorly

Click on the link to read my post 25 Characteristics of a Successful Teacher

The Plight to Ban Books Marketed for a Specific Gender

March 17, 2014


Malorie Blackman

As if book publishers and sellers don’t have enough to worry about. There used to be plenty of bookshops in my area, now there is one (which has changed management 3 times in 3 years!).

I do not like gender stereotyping and I detest sexism, but let our children read the books they want to read. If boys centered books attract a new market of male readers – isn’t that a good thing? If girl centered books features ideas and insights that are almost exclusively meaningful to girls, is that really objectionable?

Why can’t we allow our children the right to decide for themselves whether they want to read a book pitched at their gender without having others ban them from making such a choice? Why can’t we support our writers, publishers and sellers, who are already facing challenges within the ailing industry:

A national campaign to stop children’s books being labelled as “for boys” or “for girls” has won the support of Britain’s largest specialist bookseller Waterstones, as well as children’s laureate Malorie Blackman, poet laureate Carol Ann Duffy, Philip Pullman and a handful of publishers.

The Let Books Be Books campaign seeks to put pressure on retailers and publishers not to market children’s books that promote “limiting gender stereotypes”.

A petition calling on children’s publishers to “stop labelling books, in the title or on the packaging, as for girls or for boys” because “telling children which stories and activities are ‘for them’ based on their gender closes down whole worlds of interest,” has passed 3,000 signatures.


Click on the link to read This is What I Think of the No Hugging Rule at Schools

Click on the link to read Political Correctness at School

Click on the link to read What Are We Doing to Our Kids?

Click on the link to read Stop Banning Our Kids From Being Kids

Click on the link to read Banning Home-Made Lunches is a Dreadful Policy

The Plus Sized Barbie Debate Misses the Point

December 24, 2013



The debate over the latest push for a plus-sized Barbie is steeped in political correctness on both sides and ignores the children the toy is aimed at.

One side argues that Barbies aren’t of realistic dimension and the doll is guilty of influencing feelings of negative body image among young, impressionable girls.

The other side argue that the picture above shows an obese girl and that there is a responsibility to teach children that being overweight is not the ideal from a health standpoint.

My view is that Barbie has already had many decades of reproducing the same type of doll. It’s too late for the company to suddenly become inclusive. So your going to have one overweight doll amongst thousands of stick figures? That’s a great way to make someone overweight feel good, put them in a room crowded with models!

If they release the Barbie pictured above it will be the source of more bullying because one can’t help comparing it against every other Barbie ever produced. Even the marketing pitch shows the comparison.

Let’s take the responsibility of making our children body confident out of the hands of Mattel and lets own this problem and do something about it.

1. We need to tell our children that they are wonderful people, regardless of their size. If you think an overweight girl is unhealthy, try an overweight girl racked with guilt and self loathing.

2. Let’s not put such an emphasis on looks and instead replace the focus with more important attributes like kindness, empathy, loyalty and integrity.

3. Let’s help our young find their talents and show them how they can use their unique abilities to contribute to society in a meaningful way.

Plus sized Barbie is a meaningless, insincere and tokenistic gesture at a time when we need to show our kids that they really matter!




Click on the link to read Study Claims that Being Attractive can give you Better Grades

Click on the link to read The Unique Challenges that Body Image Represents for Females

Click on the link to read An 8-Year-Old’s Take on Body Image

Click on the link to read A Father’s Advice to His Daughter About Beauty

Click on the link to read The Call to Stop Telling Your Children they are Beautiful


A World Where Sex Offenders Have “Human Rights” and their Victims Have None

December 23, 2013


Striking a sex pedophile from a sex offender list is tantamount to reversing the crime. Tell that the victim who is almost certain to be scarred for life. There is no human right applicable to a person who raped another human being.

Reading this article makes me so angry. It’s political correctness gone mad. In pandering to the perpetrator we do worse than validate his crime, we become part of it:

More than 100 of the country’s most dangerous sex attackers – including paedophiles and violent rapists – have had their names secretly removed from the Sex Offenders’ Register, it has been revealed.

The criminals have used a human rights ruling to remove themselves from the list, arguing that they no longer pose a threat to the public.

The 108 convicts who have successfully used the argument, include one offender convicted of rape of a female under 13, another of burglary with intent to rape and one sentenced for buggery.

One police force removed a criminal convicted on seven counts of indecent assault on a boy under 16 from the register.

The figures were obtained under the Freedom of Information act, and asked for details of the number of convicted sex offenders who had their names removed from the register since the law was passed in September last year.

Nearly half of those who applied were successful, at rate of nearly four a week.

Those whose names have been removed from the list were once placed on it for life, but now no longer now no longer need to tell the police where they are living, or if they move near a school or young family.

Jeremy Forrest Dumped by Schoolgirl: Anyone Surprised?

October 27, 2013



This is the ultimate morality tale for any teacher stupid enough to go down the unprofessional and highly unethical path of starting a relationship with a student:


The schoolgirl who ran away with married teacher Jeremy Forrest last year when she was just 15-years-old has dumped him for a boyfriend her own age, it has been reported.

The girl, now 16, sparked an international hunt last year when she fled to France with 31-year-old Jeremy Forrest.

Forrest was arrested by French police when he turned up for a job at a bar owned by a British woman who had recognised him from television appeals and was jailed for five-and-a-half years.

The girl, who cannot be named for legal reasons, had vowed to wait for him ‘for ever’ for him and also said she wanted to have his baby.

She had been in regular contact with his parents and had reportedly made several attempts to contact him in prison.

But Social workers stepped in and banned him from having any contact with him until she is at least 18.

According to a report in the Sunday Mirror, the girl now has a new boyfriend who is a sixth-form student her own age.

She reportedly phoned Forrest’s parents in tears to explain and his father Jim broke the news to his son in prison yesterday.

A family source told the Sunday Mirror: ‘Jeremy is naturally devastated. He’s really upset, but at the same time he’s a realist.

‘He half expected this to happen while he was in prison, I think.’

She is now said to be back living with her mother.

The pair had fallen out over her relationship with Forrest but they have now made peace.

The schoolgirl first kissed Forrest in his classroom when she was 14. He took her virginity one week after her 15th birthday in the marital home while his wife was away.

They fled to Bordeaux when their affair was uncovered by her mother after someone reported seeing text messages on her phone.

Police had failed to find the messages when they examined the phone the day before the girl and Jeremy fled.

She claimed that the pair were only caught because she had been jealous of a ‘flirty barmaid’ who lured him to an interview with offers of work.

In front of his weeping teenage girlfriend, Forrest was arrested and returned to the UK to stand trial.

At Forrest’s trial, the court heard that the schoolgirl turned to her teacher during a tumultuous period in her life. She was upset over the break-up of her parents’ marriage. Both had gone on to meet new partners.

Her mother was pregnant with a new baby by her fiance, and her father had fallen in love and was busy planning a wedding.

Jeremy Forrest was all ears, but crucially failed to stop her growing infatuation in its tracks.

He posted tortured blogs about the moral dilemma he was facing, exchanged explicit photos with the girl via mobile phone and told bare-faced lies when warned over his behaviour by suspicious colleagues.

He even had the cheek to complain to the girl’s mother about the rumours threatening his reputation.

The former maths teacher is currently incarcerated in Ashfield Prison, near Bristol, one of five controversial new jails designed to house only sex offenders.

Built to cope with the dramatic increase in the number of people being convicted of sexual abuse, they have faced a barrage of criticism, with many people fearing that keeping abusers together could reinforce their behaviour.

Please click on the links to read two related posts on the same story:

This is What I Think of the No Hugging Rule at Schools

September 14, 2013




It is becoming all the rage to ban children from hugging each other at recess. This is what I think of the rule:

















Click on the link to read Political Correctness at School

Click on the link to read What Are We Doing to Our Kids?

Click on the link to read Stop Banning Our Kids From Being Kids

Click on the link to read Banning Home-Made Lunches is a Dreadful Policy

Click on the link to read School Using Bomb As Bell

The PC Police and its Implications for Male Teachers

May 13, 2013


This is a classic example why male teachers must be extremely careful to act above and beyond the professional standards adhered to by their female colleagues.

Do you honestly think that if a female crossing guard was ‘high-fiving’ children anyone would even blink an eye?

A LOLLIPOP man has been banned from giving high-fives to children as they cross the road because it’s “too dangerous”, according to the health and safety police.

Bernie Robertson – who has stopped traffic to keep young pupils safe outside Mount Annan Public School in Sydney’s southwest for 13 years – has been cautioned after a review of guidelines by Roads and Maritime Services.

Parents with children at the school have launched a furious revolt, starting a Facebook page “Support for Bernie our crossing man”, which has received more than 870 likes and an online petition with 250 signatures.

Mr Robertson said he was overwhelmed by the response from the community. “Of course I’m very pleased with the support, with what the parents have done,” he said.

Rachael Sowden, from the Parents and Citizens Association of NSW, said the issue was an example of political correctness “gone mad”.

 “We don’t believe high-fiving little children is an inappropriate thing,” she said.

“Sometimes people take things a little bit too far and this sounds like one of those incidents. While there’s no concern for their wellbeing it does seem a little bit like PC gone mad.”


Click on the link to read I Would be Happy to Have CCTV Cameras in My Classroom

Click on the link to read Should Classrooms Be Fitted With Surveillance Cameras?

Click on the link to read Schools Putting Spy Cameras in Toilets and Change Rooms

Click on the link to read Two-Year Olds Forced to Have Fingerprints and Mug Shots Taken

Click on the link to read Male Teachers Beware!

Click on the link to read Are Male Teachers Subject to Sexual Discrimination?

Click on the link to read The absence of male teachers in public schools

Teachers Told Not To Correct Student Work With Red Pen

April 22, 2013

A school in Harrow in north west London has angered teachers and MPs by telling staff not to use red ink when marking homework

A ruling to prevent teachers from marking in red pen sounds extreme, but since when is protecting the emotional state of ones students extreme?

Whilst I mark in red, I also realise that splashing red across the page can be harmful to a child’s confidence. After all, the point of corrections is to help the student become aware of a mistake and help them to overcome the skill error, not to reinforce weakness or make them feel inferior.

That is why I believe in marking work in front of the child. If something they have written doesn’t make sense, get them to read it over to you and work with them in correcting the error. If there is a spelling mistake, sound out the word together and assist in respelling the word correctly. This cooperative approach to correcting work demonstrates to the student that the mistakes are easily corrected and have no bearing on the student’s ability. Instead of seeing red and feeling despondent, the student should feel empowered and become more aware with the processes for troubleshooting and self-correcting.

I don’t see the banning of the red correction pen sufficient in itself, but I certainly wouldn’t rubbish it as political correctness gone wrong:

Teachers have been told not to use red link to mark homework to avoid upsetting pupils.

The edict has been condemned as ‘absolutely political correctness gone wild’ which risks leaving students in the dark about where they have gone wrong.

Ministers have been forced to distance themselves from the bizarre policy, insisting no government rules exist on what colour pens teachers use.

The policy would appear to be at odds with the back to basics approach of Education Secretary Michael Gove who has insisted teachers must mark pupils down for poor spelling and grammar.

He has warned that in the past too little has been done to focus on core skills to ensure young people are confident in key writing skills.

Tory MP Bob Blackman revealed his anger after being told a secondary school in his Harrow East constituency had banned teachers from using red ink.

He told MailOnline: ‘A teacher contacted me and said I cannot believe I have been instructed by my head to mark children’s homework in particular colours and not to use certain colours.

‘It is all about not wanting to discourage youngsters if their work is marked wrong.

‘It sounds to me like some petty edict which is nonsense. It is absolutely political correctness gone wild.

‘My take on all this is to say children need to understand the difference between what’s right and what’s wrong.’

Click on the link to read  Teachers, Get Your Hands Off Your Students

Click on the link to read What is it About Some Teachers and Social Media?

Click on the link to read The Mission to Stop Teachers From Having a Sense of Humour

Click on the link to read School Instructs Students on How to Become Prostitutes

Click on the link to read Some Teachers Just Desperately Want to get Fired

Click on the link to read The Case of a Teacher Suspended for Showing Integrity

Click on the link to read Primary School Introduces Insane No-Touching Policy

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