Open Thinkering


Month: July 2012

v0.3 of ‘The Essential Elements of Digital Literacies’ now available! [E-BOOK]

Version 0.4 is now available! Click here

The Essential Elements of Digital LiteraciesAs promised, I’ve finished version 0.3 of my e-book The Essential Elements of Digital Literacies before the end of July!

Those who invested in v0.2 have already received their update, according to the OpenBeta process I devised.

You can invest in v0.3 and then get every update to v1.0 by clicking below:






What’s included in this version?

  • Contents page
  • Chapter 2 – What’s the problem? (*NEW!*)
  • Chapter 5 – The Essential Elements of Digital Literacies

If you buy into the book now, you’ll receive the rest of the chapters as I write them – free!

More questions? I probably answered them in this post announcing the e-book!

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Condescening Wonka - newsletterEvery Sunday I publish a (free) newsletter called Things I Learned This Week.

It’s divided into five sections:

  • Education
  • Technology
  • Productivity
  • Miscellaneous
  • Quotations

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Is Michael Gove systematically dismantling English state education?

Would you trust this man with your kids?

Is Michael Gove systematically dismantling state education in England?

I’m not sure.

To believe so presumes competence, intention and strategy on his part. Most of what I observe is an ill-informed sociopath flapping about at seemingly-random educational targets.

See what you think by looking at these BBC News stories since the beginning of the calendar year:

So no need to be a qualified teacher in England any more. This news, of course, was buried by being announced on a Friday in the school holidays, on the very day of the Olympic Games opening ceremony. Perhaps that was to avoid another strike by teachers like the one in November 2011?

From where I’m sitting, this looks like part of a wider move to centralise schooling in England. There were huge financial incentives for schools to become academies. Now, even if the money’s not there, there’s certainly political and other kinds of pressures bearing down on headteachers and governors.

Once English schools all become academies they’re outside of local authority control but under the direct control of Whitehall. Gove may bleat that academies have powers to do this or that, but when there’s no buffer between the headteacher and the all-powerful politician in control of the money, there’s no real contest.

Michael Gove is the most power-hungry, dangerously reactionary, and misguided millionaire Secretary of State for Education we’ve had a for a long time. He proposes yachts for over-privileged, taxpayer-funded families and gives out religious texts inscribed with his name. Meanwhile extra cash for the most deprived boroughs is turned down and, in the midst of one of the most sustained attacks on the profession in living memory, teachers are expected to roll over and accept performance-related pay.

Who will rid us of this troublesome beast?

Image CC BY-NC staticgirl