The Toxic Classroom: And What Can be Done About It, 1st Edition (Paperback) book cover

The Toxic Classroom

And What Can be Done About It, 1st Edition

By Richard Steward

Routledge

176 pages

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pub: 2020-07-23
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Description

The Toxic Classroom offers a wide-ranging look at education today and explores in detail the pressures children experience as a result of constant change, digital technology and political interference. Beginning with what it is like to be a child in the classroom, the book goes on to provide a detailed analysis of the curriculum, assessment and accountability, school structures, educating for global citizenship and the plethora of social issues schools are now expected to solve.

Written from the perspective of a successful headteacher with over thirty years' teaching experience, the book considers what needs to be done to put things right and outlines a more equitable and effective school system.Each chapter outlines the steps schools can implement immediately and the longer-term policy changes that are needed de-toxify the classroom and facilitate a genuine love of learning.

Offering a challenging yet compelling argument for putting education back into the hands of teachers, this book will be of great interest both to the general reader and to those working within education such as teachers and professionals who wish to improve the ways in which children learn and develop.

Table of Contents

Introduction

  1. What is it like to be a child in school today?
  2. An early start

    Working with others

    Parents

    Poverty and neglect

    Fear of failure

    Social media

    Mental health

    Boredom

    Schools are the answer

    Toxic schooling

    What can schools do now to put things right?

    What should policymakers do to put thing right?

  3. The curriculum
  4. The background

    Where are we now? The Foundation Stage

    Where are we now? Primary Education

    Where are we now? Secondary Education

    Where are we now? Post-16 Education

    Destination university

    What should children be learning in school?

    What can schools do now to put things right?

    What should policymakers do to put thing right?

  5. The core subjects
  6. English

    Mathematics

    Science

    Computing

    Languages

    The Humanities

    Conclusion

    What can schools do now to put things right?

    What should policymakers do to put thing right?

  7. Beyond the core
  8. The arts

    Design technology

    Physical education

    PSHE/citizenship

    Studies and ‘ologies’

    Vocational subjects

    Extra-curricular

    Conclusion

    What can schools do now to put things right?

    What should policymakers do to put thing right?

  9. Assessment and accountability
  10. Early years testing

    Primary testing

    Secondary assessment

    Assessment post-16

    Ofsted- a new hope?

    What can schools do now to put things right?

    What should policymakers do to put thing right?

  11. Structures
  12. Academies

    Free schools

    Multi-academy trusts

    Grammar schools

    Independent schools

    Faith schools

    Beyond the mainstream

    Admissions

    Departures

    A final thought on age

    What can schools do now to put things right?

    What should policymakers do to put thing right?

  13. A wider view
  14. What happened to the learning culture?

    Education, childcare or social service?

    Educating for global citizenship

    What can schools do now to put things right?

    What should policymakers do to put thing right?

  15. A vision for the future
  16. Independent, grammar and faith schools

    Structural confusion

    Age and stage

    Governance

    What can schools do now to put things right?

    What should policymakers do to put thing right?

  17. A 21st century curriculum
  18. The curriculum

    A modest proposal

    Summary: a curriculum model for the future

  19. Conclusion: detoxifying the classroom

What are children learning for?

Putting things right

Painting in oils

Appendix

Index

About the Author

Richard Steward is an educational consultant with extensive experience as a teacher and headteacher. He has taught in a variety of schools in a thirty-year career and has worked as a part-time lecturer with The Open University. He has worked with the National College for Teaching and Learning and been involved in a wide range of national educational research projects. His previous book is entitled The Gradual Art of School Improvement and you can find him on twitter @StewardRichard.

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
EDU000000
EDUCATION / General
EDU010000
EDUCATION / Elementary
EDU023000
EDUCATION / Preschool & Kindergarten
EDU025000
EDUCATION / Secondary