The Pirate Party in Manchester. Looking forward to the Ancoats and Clayton By-election, December 2013


Manifesto Education page thumbnail✔ Scrap Tuition Fees
✔ Smaller Classes
✔ Local Control
✔ 21st Century Education
✔ Life Long Education

We should have an education system for all. University tuition fees burden students with debt and act as a barrier to access and success. They must be frozen and reversed. Class size guidelines must be enforced for all ages and schools should be under local democratic control. Free Schools should not be under government control, but have council supervision and local representation on boards. Teachers must be free to focus on teaching, and not bogged down by administration.
I want to see a national curriculum that is about the “what”, but not “how”, so that schools and teachers can teach in a way that best benefits the student. Above all, we need to educate a generation of innovators, not idle consumers. It is important that in an increasingly digital world Computer Science is available in schools. Children should not be just learning how to use business software, but how to use the tools and technology that we all now have available to us. At all levels, real world experience and partnerships outside of the classroom and lecture hall should be a core part of learning.

I think we need to look at what has worked elsewhere too. Scandinavian style ‘high schools’ which offer 6 month residential courses before higher education without exams to develop students abilities and desire to learn, would provide real benefits to students and the country at large. Alternative methods of grading GCSEs and A levels such as percentile based systems should be explored to make the system fairer and more transparent.

Investment in eduction is, after all, investment in the future.

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