A weekend walk on the Yorkshire Wolds.

Yorkshire does like a good old monument. Three good ones on one brief walk.

So school should be fully back in swing now but I’m left with one overriding feeling.


School helpfully emailed all parents with a list of topics that need revising for the upcoming Mock Exams. Unfortunately well over half the topics are new news items to Hawklad. Is it revising when you have to look at a topic for the first time. Deep sigh….

Hardly any interactions with teaching staff still, Hawklad is definitely feeling increasingly cut adrift. Unfortunately for the rare subjects that are still in touch, he kinda wishes they had joined in the collective radio silence.

One of the teachers did mark some of his submitted work. I thought it was really good work, better than I could ever manage. But what do I know, the teacher awarded him a FAIL. Apparently when a question asks for consequences of a particular event, marks will only be awarded if the pupil sticks to the limited number of consequences provided by the teacher in class, which have been approved by those in charge. It reflects just one of a number of equally valid opinions. Stick to what you are told. Parrot learn the wording and then regurgitate the words in the exam. Critical thinking, or thinking for yourself are not required. Valid consequences and detailed reasonings that differ from the very narrow school script are not accepted. I did recheck Hawklad’s answer and yes I quickly found that his arguments were backed up by a number of subject experts. Hawklad really can’t get his head round all this. It confuses him. It frustrates him. It makes him doubt himself.

What makes this worse is that this is his favourite subject. The subject he is best at. The one he enjoys the most and yet because of the academic approach, it’s now the one he is getting the lowest marks in.

Failed for thinking. Failed for having a passion in something. Kinda sums up the school at present.

It just seems like a MONUMENTal waste.

I do like a good pun, but tonight even that pun doesn’t make me smile. Yes school is back again.

48 thoughts on “Monuments

  1. I’m very sorry Gary. This is so frustrating for you and for Hawklad. The prep for the exams sound rough and I wish you both the best with it. I also hope there can be an appeal for his assignment.


  2. It’s pathetic. It’s outrageous. It’s a sign of disconnect on the part of the education system. Hawklad will do better educating himself. How important are those diplomas? I have never shown any of mine to anyone.


  3. I am sorry that there seems to be no effort to motivate Hawklad and show appreciation for his efforts. I am not surprised that the joy of learning or investing time and effort shrinks.
    But I have to say that the monuments look very beautiful!


  4. I’m sorry. I’m so sorry how much this affects Hawklad. And if it affects him it’s going to affect you. Keep hanging in there. Keep encouraging him to be that critical thinker and to disregard parot learning. Someway, someday he will be allowed to be who he is and soar. Love to you both. ❤❤


  5. Heart wrenching…
    But just to show my practical empathy, your situation absolutely matches my own experience, of the unfortunate plague intellectual/mental dilapidation has become, practiced as it seems at all levels of education.
    In 2007, while doing my PgCert in Autism/Asperger’s, we took a “Critical Thinking” module.
    Right up my alley, said I…
    Hard work for the substantial paper, and the utter shock of being given the absolute minimum Pass.
    Angry and frustrated, emailed lecturer, and got the following reply, “Yes, yes, Critical Thinking, but this is not how you were taught to apply it…”
    The lecturer was clearly aware of the situation’s utter ridiculousness, yet kept defending his position.
    And mind you, it wasn’t at all about the CT’s theoretical definitions and such, but applying it to a subject of our choice.
    That was the sad day when I sealed my decision not to continue into a Masters, even though we were given the enticing option.
    Students through all levels are taught unfortunately not *how* to think, but *what* to think.


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