Tuesday, 16 February 2010
I'm Delighted to tell you, `Welcome, you're crap`
Last week, for instance, a colleague of mine (let's call her Judy) was informed by her line-manager that she could only fail one more student otherwise the course would fall below benchmarks. Never mind that half of the students shouldn't be on the course anyway. Some halfwit enrolled them without checking their initial assessment results and poor Judy was told that she couldn't get rid of them - she would just have to 'support' them to achieve. They are so far below the required level, that 'support' in this case will have to mean 'passing them anyway'. So much for raising standards. The above `cut and paste` came from a post on a new blog I stumbled across the other day," The Forbidden Lectures of Lizzie Love" That extract struck a familiar chord with me, reminding me of a few trainee police officers aka `probationers`, that I was once responsible for as a patrol sergeant. I'm talking about the ones who, as hard as they and I tried, just weren't going to couper la moutarde. Yet towards the end of my career, people with very questionable ability were getting in and staying in, at best just bumping along the bottom and at worst were total liabilities, creating havoc and even occasionally and by some miracle or some other mysterious hold they had over the organisation, getting promoted. Mindful of the fact that we all come from various backgrounds and with varying standards of education, both academic and from the college of general life, it also touched ever so slightly on what I read on Behind Blue Eyes yesterday. We are all different. However, when we choose a particular career path there are usually certain things that one must achieve, certain minimum standards or bench marks, in order to become accepted and, heaven forbid, competent. Once in, we can then set about getting good at it and maybe even find a particular path within our chosen career that we would like to get really good at - is `specialisation` a non pc dirty word yet, I'm not sure? Yet I have seen people in mine and other jobs, quite recently, who seem to struggle to write a sentence one can understand, even when ignoring the grammer and speling. I won't go on, but will close with the thought that if my former job, and others by the sound of Ms Lizzie's piece, have been reduced to lowering the bar until an applicant can shuffle over it, then what does the future hold? I think its time to dust off a couple of old Mr Huxley's books and re-read them, because my current world doesn't look so brave or new at the moment.