The Treehorn Express
The attachments contain an eight-page presentation and a one-page summary.
Belief Systems, Control Systems, Response Systems
A Nation is judged by the way that it treats its children
Since managerialism infected the operations of businesses and government institutions in the western world in the 1980-90s, and neoliberal [conservatism on steroids; control of government institutions by big business] policies were adopted by the major political parties*, the effects on school children and their life chances have been marked by dramatic ….. monstrously expensive in financial, social and moral terms….. alterations to education systems whose operations in the main now have a profiteering motive.
Neoliberal politicalisation of schooling with profits in mind requires the exercise of at least mild force to succeed. Love of children and the exercise of professional ethics have nothing to do with it. Totalitarian techniques are necessary. That’s the way that neoliberal management has to work, with coercion its motif.
Seldom considered are the effects that such attitudes have on the teaching profession’s reactions nor on the emotions and attitudes of pupils. If governments ignore the emotions of school children and prey upon the good nature of teachers, the future for children and the future of their nation is bleak. Classroom teachers, in charge of the nation’s engine rooms, are human beings and they have feelings. The attached paper suggests that responses to fear-laden coercion are more likely to be feelings of ennui, marked by discontent and dissatisfaction, than by any kind of enthusiasm for the collection of data from hassled kids.
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* “In the work that’s essentially the gold standard in the field, it is concluded that for roughly 70% of the population – the lower 70% on the wealth/income scale – they have no influence on policy whatsoever. They’re effectively disenfranchised. As you move up the wealth/income ladder you get a little more influence on policy. When you get to the top, which is maybe a tenth of one per cent, people essentially get what they want, i.e. they determine the policy. ..that’s.not democracy; it’s plutocracy.” [N.Chomksy]