Friday, October 08, 2010

Save Katharine Birbalsingh - the Facebook campaign is launched


There is now a Facebook campaign dedicated to saving Ms Birbalsingh 'from revenge'.

Presumably that of the her 'politically neutral', over-zealous executive headteacher, who is herself just a victim of the system and deserving of pity.

His Grace exhorts his readers and communicants to register their support.

And to tell their sisters, cousins and aunts.

Bless you.

UPDATE (after just 20 minutes)

Apparently, Dr Irene Bishop and the Governing Body of St Michael and All Angels Academy in Camberwell have given in. Ms Birbalsingh is back.

That must have been the shortest Facebook campaign in history...

25 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

She's got her job back :

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/education/educationnews/8051321/Teacher-who-criticised-education-standards-to-return-to-school.html

8 October 2010 17:54  
Blogger Jared Gaites said...

Wink wink - nudge nudge.

8 October 2010 18:14  
Blogger Old Holborn said...

A drop of sanity in an ocean of stupidity

8 October 2010 18:32  
Anonymous len said...

This is indeed a victory for common sense.
Perhaps it will encourage more like minded people to speak up.

8 October 2010 18:35  
Blogger Torontory said...

Well done for your not insignificant part in obtaining this outcome.

8 October 2010 18:42  
Blogger Gnostic said...

An excellent result Your Grace!

Let's hope that Dr Bishop doesn't find another less obvious way to exact incensed leftist revenge...

8 October 2010 18:47  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Now that this is all over and done with, I have a query. Can people simply turn up to Tory conference and stand up and say any old thing without someone checking what is actually going to be said, and in what manner?

In other words, did nobody realise that she would be treading on thin ice, or was that the general plan?

It seems a bit fragile to assume that just because she was Head Teacher she would be cosher in all things political conference and all. Pardon me for sounding paranoid but I don't trust you lot as far as I can spit.

8 October 2010 18:52  
Blogger Praguetory said...

Well done, your Grace. It pays to go nuclear from time to time.

8 October 2010 18:52  
Blogger Oswin said...

Well Done Your Grace, quick work!

I was rather worried, having watched the video footage, that she was on a hiding to nothing.

Thankfully the 'authorities' appear to have 'bottled-out' ... which begs the question: if they were of so little resolve, why did they move against her in the first place?

Well-done to that bloke Adrian too, Your Grace!

8 October 2010 19:06  
Anonymous not a machine said...

Result: well done ..... everyone

8 October 2010 19:12  
Anonymous Michal said...

That was...fast. It looks like the decision by mrs. Irene Bishop and the Governing Body was pre-emptive, considering they gave in this easily.

I'm really happy to know ms. Birbalsingh has her job back. Joyful news.

8 October 2010 19:27  
Blogger john in cheshire said...

Good result. I wonder how much leverage your intentions to campaign on her behalf has had on their decision? I suppose we'll never know.

8 October 2010 19:49  
Blogger PJH said...

Would His Grace like to place this date in his diary to see if she is actually still in said school in a years hence?

Or whether she has left, quietly of course (for whatever ostensible reason,) in the interim.

I have a feeling Management have conceded the battle in this but the war may go on...

8 October 2010 19:53  
Blogger Dick the Prick said...

Your Grace

Yippee and I hope you have a good weekend. Off on an archectural wander with me best chum from college. Meant to be sunny round Manchester. Apparently the Liverpool Anglican Cathderal wasn't finished until 1980's ish!! Gadzooks! That can't be right.

York Minster has received £10 squillions to do up the East window. The Heritage folks have funded a park round here and, err.., well, i'm no gardener but....

Any who, congrats to Snuffy, expedience was required.

DtP

8 October 2010 20:11  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

al pacino is the best actor of all time!

8 October 2010 20:30  
Blogger Simon said...

well done your Grace, sanity prevails...for the moment

8 October 2010 23:49  
Anonymous tallytory said...

You're blazing the trail, Your Grace. Way to go!

9 October 2010 00:33  
Anonymous Mike Stallard said...

As a Catholic Teacher, I am appalled. Your Grace's campaign was, of course, effective and well thought out.
The behaviour of a Catholic Secondary School was weak, vacillating and rudderless.
What are those children learning?

9 October 2010 07:26  
Anonymous Flossie said...

She tells her story in the Daily Mail this morning:

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/debate/article-1319025/KATHARINE-BIRBALSINGH-I-wont-silenced-children-betrayed-schools.html

9 October 2010 09:29  
OpenID yokel said...

Interesting find by Dizzy about the background of the Executive Head Teacher, Dr Irene Bishop. One might even be pardoned for calling her a supporter of NuLabour.

9 October 2010 10:10  
Blogger Unsworth said...

Your Grace

I would not wish to detract from this small victory, but it is - as has been remarked - but one battle in what inevitably must be a prolonged war. For well over a decade The State (i.e. Ministers) has tinkered and played with the Education of our children. The results of that constant interference and proscription are all about us.

Teachers and schools have, willingly or unwillingly, wittingly or unwittingly, become the vehicle for Government Social Engineering. They are obliged to act in an almost entirely proscribed manner towards their charges, even to the extent of direct involvement in their physical and social care. The National Curriculum has been disastrous. Virtually every hour of every day is determined by central government diktat. The schools inspection regime has been blatantly politicised, with 'targets' constantly changed and arbitrarily imposed.

In all of this the Teachers' Trade Unions have raised not a single criticism - save to demand more cash for their members' compliance with Minister's foibles and lunacy. Indeed these Unions largely regard themselves as a political force, determined to change society for the better - whatever that may mean. They have become political visionaries, rather than professionals. As a nation we have lost our personal and professional integrities. Teaching skills and ability have been subsumed to political dogma.

There is a small chance that things may or can change. I've said repeatedly in various forums that schools must be given greater autonomy, that Governing Bodies must exert greater control over (and accept greater responsibility for) what goes on in their schools. What used to be HMI (the inspectors) must be overhauled so that inspectors become directly and personally answerable for their actions - as should the teaching profession itself. And government must take its hands off. Proscription is the enemy of initiative, motivation, any form of morality, and all local authority or control.

In general schools are well capable of turning out decently educated and motivated pupils. I have worked with some truly splendid teachers and Heads. They have been energetic, remarkably able and dedicated to the real task of education. Each of them knew that if they were not doing their jobs properly I would be holding them up for question. Boots on the ground are the answer.

It is time for parents and local communities to re-assert themselves and to take an active part in their children's education. I'm not suggesting interference, I'm saying that teachers must be held to account but must also be supported and encouraged when they are doing well. That does not entail classroom involvement by governors, but it certainly does mean that teachers should regularly be exposed to the real world by meeting and dealing with those that they should answer to. In my schools we do this simply by informal visit, asking questions, commenting, engaging in reasonable and reasoned debate. It's daunting for both sides - at first, but regular contact engenders massive confidence and understanding for all parties. That is a starting point.

9 October 2010 10:14  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

It seems to me that the statement put out be the Diocese does not explain why this DEPUTY head (not Head teacher)

1) was suspended

2) is now allowed back

3) how they will support her and show their support given the suspension and the at best lukewarm statement

4) what happens next - if they suspended her then they are likely to put in place some kind of disciplinary.

If I were her I'd want all of this sorted out beforehand and I'll also want a new statement that acknowledges she had full permission to attend and show photos in order to counter the impression in the last statement that she may be a child protection risk.

The school and governors have behaved appallingly and I hope she doesn't just roll over as her reputation has been impugned

9 October 2010 11:39  
Blogger Lord Lavendon said...

Dr Cranmer, I only hope that this is not a false victory. It is one matter to be allowed back to do your job, another to be able to continue a professional working relationship,given the apparent backing off of the head teacher.

Yet,I do hope that this lady's 'card is not marked' so to speak and I pray that she will not be subject to the form of sutle bullying of the type which no facebook campaign would be able to do anything about.

In that sense, I do pray that Miss Snuff has the protection of Michael and All the Angels when she gets back on Monday.

9 October 2010 11:57  
Anonymous non mouse said...

Yes, Your Grace; Lord Lavendon et al have good points. The marxist method of 'subtle bullying': character assassination; meconnaissance; superciliousness; indeed just plain schoolyard snideness - is by now standard practice among their operatives.

If the victim moves once (s)he's trussed up in the sack, (s)he'll commit "suicide" by strangulation.

I wouldn't want Ms. B's job back, if I were her! But at least she has friends elsewhere, so there is hope.

9 October 2010 16:31  
Blogger writermannkl said...

raham
Yes, methinks you are a wee bit distrusting of dear Snuffy.

I believe that you may be right on the exaggeration of lefties in the balmy and gentle climes of Cambs but you are not right in London or Bristol to name but two.

Actually all this talk of 'leftie' control by teachers is a bit distracting. Standards have without doubt gone down. What is right for a particular child is more important than systems, bureaucracies and tables.

In the St Michael and All Angels blurb please go to 'Key Features'. Have you ever read such a lot of meaningless waffle. I quote: 'Superb pastoral care... A strong Christian ethos...

Where one may well ask was the 'superb pastoral care' given to Snuffy now to be know as Miss Martyr Snuffy.

Strong Christian ethos? When the Head and the Bishop withheld important information like the fact that parents approval was at every stage asked for, in fact seemed to me that Snuffy went that extra mile in conscientiousness.

Now there are loads of St M's and all the Angels in Brit land but what does it mean?

9 October 2010 16:42  

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