Are teachers fit to teach?

A Nov. 26, 2006 [U.K.] Daily Mail article doesn’t exactly address the question “Are teachers fit to teach?”, but it identifies that far more teachers than is good for anyone lack important and fundamental qualifications.

In a test given to more than 2,000 workers from key professions,

  • Two-thirds of teachers made a basic apostrophe mistake;
  • Eight per cent even muddled the use of I and me;
  • In the multiple choice question, “I implied/inferred/ensued from his art collection that he was extremely wealthy”, seven per cent wrongly picked “implied” while a similar proportion believed the answer was “ensued”; eleven per cent thought it was “none of the above” while seven per cent passed on the question altogether;
  • Some eight per cent failed to give the correct answer to a question requiring respondents to choose between “I” and “me”.
  • One in five still has problems with spelling, punctuation and simple maths after spending at least 16 years in education.

The article concludes by stating:

A spokesman for the National Union of Teachers pointed out that teachers were far from being bottom of the class in the online test, adding: “It would be nice to eliminate the problem completely but teachers are human beings and subject to error.” (Full Story)

That philosophy turned teachers with the responsibility and ability to teach into individuals who no longer can teach but have the right to hold a teaching job.

To err is human, but to be fully human one must be willing to accept duties and responsibilities, not merely clamour for the right to be employed in a job whose demands exceed one’s capabilities. To be fully human, one must accept responsibility for the consequences of one’s errors.

I wonder how many of the functionaries of the National Union of Teachers would be willing to undergo surgery by a surgeon who has the reputation of saying “oops” too often, and who has been taken to task for botching appendectomies and amputations. If they lost their leg through medical error, I doubt it that any of the functionaries so easily ready to grant their teachers the right to err would say of a surgeon who botched their surgery, “He is a human being and entitled to commit errors.”

Teachers should no sooner be permitted to commit errors than surgeons or any professionals are.

By the way, even though one should hope that teachers will be held to higher standards than those the National Union of Teachers worked for so long to lower them to, the last paragraph in the Daily Mail article would have been more grammatically and more logically correct if it were to end like this: “…teachers are human beings and entitled to commit errors.”

After all, patients are being subjected to errors that their doctors commit, and students are being subjected to the errors that their teachers commit. Let’s hope that teachers, medical doctors, air plane pilots, engineers, and other critical professions like them, will not be permitted to commit errors at the high rate teachers are presently expected to commit them. I for one am merely a human being and object to being subjected to errors committed by others, errors that can and too often end lives and maim or injure.
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Educating Our Children for the Global Gynarchia

Fathers for Life contains more than 40 web pages or articles that contain the phrase “education system” and the word “children” in the text body. Here are direct links to some of those articles:

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