> Mrs. O'Neill's Blog: Ideas to chew on

Friday, December 15, 2006

Ideas to chew on

If you could make three changes in your (old) school, what would they be?

Here's three ideas I thought up this morning:

1. Begin the school day an hour earlier. Make the final hour voluntary classes that pupils have to sign up for giving a reason why they wanted to take part. These could be vocational or study based.

2. Develop links with other schools that pay more than lip service to the idea. Each school should have a genuine exchange programme that would allow pupils and staff to spend time in the other school.

3. Have schools nominate a key 'value' or virtue or strength, which they will focus on. Put it on their blazers ( or sweatshirts...) Reward schools that do this with imagination and commitment.

What do you think of these ideas? Got any of your own?


Ren said...

Why start the day earlier? Why not have an hour after the normal school day for tutorials? I like the idea of that. When I was in primary school I spent the first six years being bottom of the class and the last year being near the top - or within the first three - and the main, or the only, reason was PERSONAL ATTENTION! I turned up for tutorials, which were held after school for bright kids (and in those days they were quite explicit about that). The reason I turned up for the classes was that the teacher told me I was bright and should really attend them. Any hoo, I think the idea of after-school tutorials is a great idea in a comprehensive secondary because it allows the teacher to focus on the bright kids - which they can't do during the normal course of the school day.


David said...

I heard some "expert" on the radio the other day and he was quoting various studies which seem to show that teenagers genuinely have a harder time getting up and getting started in the morning and that they hit their peak around mid-afternoon when adults (which I think he defined as 40+) are just beginning to sag. If the research is correct, maybe we should be starting later rather than earlier. :-)

liz o'neill said...

Well, they do seem to sleep a lot later. Actually I seem to remember a study about teenagers and sleep as well.

I think the thing is that the current set up in secondary schools just doesn't 'feel' right. Not sure why.