By a Newsnet reporter
Scottish Tory leader Ruth Davidson has had her grasp of Scottish education questioned following comments she made where she called for Scotland to follow England’s example on education.
The General Secretary of the Educational Institute of Scotland (EIS), Larry Flanagan said that Ms Davidson appeared not to know what the Curriculum for Excellence was about.

Ms Davidson has called for the creation of English style technical schools in order to train disaffected teenagers to become proficient in trades such as engineering and plumbing.

Miss Davidson said:

‘Rather than sticking rigidly to the one size fits all model, other parts of the UK have innovated in the delivery of education by tailoring schooling to the needs of the parents and local community.

“We want to bring forward proposals to free more schools from the direct control of councils.

“We want to see more choice and innovation in Scotland by looking at what is going on elsewhere in Britain in terms of technical and free schools.’

However the Scottish Conservative leader was described as not understanding Scottish education by the general secretary of the Educational Institute of Scotland (EIS), Larry Flanagan.

Mr Flanagan said that these paths were already open to Scottish based youngsters through modern apprenticeships and college courses, paths which he pointed offered youngsters assistance in achieving their aims through state school education.

In response to Miss Davidson’s comments, Mr. Flanagan said: “The tone of Ruth Davidson’s remarks seems to suggest she does not understand what Curriculum for Excellence is actually about.

“At the end of third year all pupils are entitled to a three – year plan, which links in with modern apprenticeships and further education to address the needs of pupils who leave school at 16.

“All pupils have access to the same level of experiences across S1 – S3 then they have a focus on a career path in response to their abilities.’

He added: “We already have a plan in place, but the Tories are not aware of it.”


Hing em high
2012-04-12 01:29

Isn’t she priceless?
2012-04-12 06:07

Oh, dear, Ruthie.
2012-04-12 08:44

“…tailoring schooling to the needs of the parents and local community.” How about tailoring schooling to the needs of the kids? Ever considered that Ruth? Or is it your view that kids from poorer (financial) backgrounds should be kicked out and made to work as soon as possible? Or how else can we interpret the above quote?
Thee Forsaken One
2012-04-12 09:13

Ruth Davidson seems to get getting accused of not understanding anything nowadays. It doesn’t help that when she opens her mouth it seems to prove the accusations true.

P.S. Can we please ban ‘{insert name} accused’ headlines. It gives me horrible reminders of other news sources which shall not be named for legal reasons.
2012-04-12 10:40

I completely agree on both points.

Better to stay silent and be thought a fool than to speak out and remove all doubt.

So, perhaps risking judgement under the above theory, can I respectfully request a little more imagination in headline writing?

edinburgh quine
2012-04-12 09:29

It used to be we were educated for life, now we’re educating children to work. Employers are expecting young people to leave school and go into work, fully trained which is wrong.

I dont entirely blame the employers. There was a push in the 90’s to lift untrained young people’s wages, so employers took the line that if they had to pay more then the student had to know more. Either that or they wouldn’t employ young folk.

It’s the school’s job to teach them the basics and it’s the employer’s job to teach them the job. And if that means the wage has to drop a little, then so be it.

We dont want to go back to the days when apprentices had to pay for their apprenticeship, but paying kids not much less than a qualified older person is daft. If I were an employer, I know who I’d choose in that situation.
Thee Forsaken One
2012-04-12 09:36

Part of the problem is not having enough jobs and the age old requirement of having work experience but never getting a job because you don’t have it.

With the retirement age rising and pensions being ransacked, it’s going to get even harder for young people to get a job. Being in my mid-twenties, I speak from experience it’s a nightmare getting a job when people with 10 to 15 years experience on you are getting paid off all over the place and applying for the same jobs as you.
2012-04-14 00:44

If you think that’s bad, try applying for a job when you’ve spend the last 10 years as a stay at home parent with only out of date temporary jobs as your work experience.
I’m not even 30, but I feel like I’ve been tossed on the scrapheap. Where’s the help and support when you need it? Nowhere according to the dole!

Ron Wilson
2012-04-12 09:33

Typical Tory, so quick to ape England with not a clue regarding her own country.
Many S3-4 weans undertake Skills for Work courses – Rural Skills, Construction, Hairdressing, Child Care and Development to name but a few – as an integral part of their mainstream education, often as an alternative to PSE/PE/RE.
No need to shunt them off to so-called ‘technical schools’ at an early age where choice barely exists, unlike ACfE where choice is at the heart of the curriculum & every pupil has a right to a BROAD general education.
Back of the class for Davidson.
2012-04-12 10:33

Hi Ron! Whilst I agree with the feelings you express in your comment I do think it’s a bit patronising of you to refer to S3-4 students as “weans”! I know that when I was that age,which wasn’t yesterday or the day before,I would’ve been well hacked off to be called a “wean” or,in this part of the world,bairn!

geddy lee
2012-04-12 10:04

Remember, as far as the unionists are concerned, Scotland can’t do anything without London.

That’s the whole case for the “union” so it’s natural that Davidson feels she must show her ignorance and self loathing by attacking her own country’s education system.

The unionists simply can’t help themselves.
2012-04-12 16:53

Quoting Thee Forsaken One:

Being in my mid-twenties, I speak from experience it’s a nightmare getting a job when people with 10 to 15 years experience on you are getting paid off all over the place and applying for the same jobs as you.

After 10 or 15 years of experience you start hearing the line –
“you are overqualified for the position”.

2012-04-12 17:30

“We want to bring forward proposals to free more schools from the direct control of councils”

20 years ago the Tories brought in legislation to do exactly this. Back in the Dark Ages when Michael Forsyth was Scottish Minister for Education (they were depressing times for education even more so than now) he pushed through the Self-Governing Schools Etc. (Scotland) Act (1989) which got less than a lukewarm response from parents, schools and education authorities. Just two schools in the whole of Scotland opted out and in the passing years returned to Local Authority control. The proposal failed because Forsyth and his party didn’t understand the Scottish Education system or those involved in or responsible for it. Seems they haven’t learned anything in the past two decades.
2012-04-12 18:00

Yet more evidence that the Tories just dinna get it.
2012-04-12 19:02

Poor wee Ruth, we are picking on her again.
I know it is hard to avoid as she is such an easy target
with all these silly blunders, bad acting and overdone hand
and facial gestures. Like Willie and Johanne, our wee Ruth
Is just cannon fodder for her party.
I wonder if there will be any changes after the council elections,
it doesn’t really matter as I know there will be positive changes
after the YES vote wins independence for us.
2012-04-12 20:09

Unfortunately Ruth Davidson’s inexperience is apparently clear in everything she says and does. What worries me most is that she seems either unable or unwilling to try to get up to speed on everything. I feel she thinks her confidence and ability to speak out will win the day. Unfortunately you do need to know your subject before opening your mouth. Ruth doesnt attempt to know anything. She thinks if she copies the Mother Party down south then all will be well. How can this lady debate or discuss anything if she doesnt take time to learn. When ministers are appointed to different remits within cabinet swotting up is the first thing they do. Often they know nothing about the area they’ve been given, but know they need to in order to survive. This basic lesson has not yet been learned by her.
2012-04-13 10:02

Teri: You have hit upon a major problem of Westminster style politics, to quote – ” When ministers are appointed ….swotting up is the first thing they do”.
What a job, eh? No formal qualifications necessary just a bit of swotting up on key words the civil servants might use. A real-time Yes Minister scenario.

And to be a bit sniffy with this report. Plumbing is a trade, mechanics/fitters have a trade, and these trades require considerable skill and a level of diplomacy since often the work requires dealing with the public.
Engineering is a chartered profession requiring a degree, and splits into three defined branches – Civil,Electrica  l and Mechanical, So a Mechanical Engineer is not a mechanic, a Civil Engineer isn’t a brickie, nor an Electrical Engineer a sparkie.
2012-04-16 19:10

See all you lot criticising poor wee Ruthie, don’t you realise that she was hand picked for her ability to help Cameron and his London Tories to implement their hidden agenda to actually end the Union, not to save it? Wee Mikey Forsyth and Cruddas let that cat out of the bag a couple of weeks ago.

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