Chalk Talk: A more level playing field in school sports
Richard Garner has been Education Editor of The Independent for 12 years and writing about the subject for 34 years. Before becoming a journalist, he worked as a disc jockey in London pubs and clubs and for a hospital radio station. His main hobbies are cricket (watching these days) and theatre. On his days off, he is most likelt to be found at Lord’s or the King’s Head Theatre Club.
Wednesday 05 March 2014
I have been wanting to say this all winter: at last, some good news from the world of English cricket! Chance to Shine, the charity that promotes cricket in state schools, has just announced that its efforts to bring the game to the attention of girls have resulted in the millionth girl being signed up to play the sport.
The picture contrasts with a decade ago, when cricket was declining in state schools, with fewer than 10 per cent of them offering the sport – and it not being on the menu at all for most girls. Now, more than two million young people have been introduced to the sport – 46 per cent of them girls.
Charlotte Edwards, captain of the England women's cricket team, describes the charity's efforts as a "fantastic achievement". Just quoting her makes me realise I should have modified that statement in my opening paragraph. After all, the women's team did retain The Ashes in Australia this winter. Perhaps it's time for a change of allegiance.
The thorny topic of regional pay for teachers reared its head at a recent seminar organised by the Westminster Education Forum. Ministers, you may remember, were much in favour of the idea a couple of years ago.
Grist to their mill, therefore, would have come from evidence given by senior civil servant Marcus Bell to the assembled hordes. It would take a teacher in Wales just three years to earn enough to buy a three-bedroomed house at around the average price for the area – whereas a teacher in Kensington and Chelsea would take 246 years, he told the conference.
Surely, therefore, the London teacher deserves more money. (Or is the message that people are trying to get across that the Welsh teacher deserves less?)
Meanwhile, conference organisers, in an attempt to make Bell feel at home in what could be an uncomfortable atmosphere due to opposition from teachers to the Government's school reforms told him: "We don't shoot the messenger."
"You might not," replied Bell.
Man who held up 'hire me' sign at Waterloo station returns a year later with 'I'm hiring' sign
Saudi preacher who 'raped and tortured' his five -year-old daughter to death is released after paying 'blood money'
Rob Lowe hits out at White House decision not to meet Israeli leader
Iraq invasion 2003: The bloody warnings six wise men gave to Tony Blair as he prepared to launch poorly planned campaign
Winston Churchill: From accusations of anti-Semitism to the blunt refusal that led to the deaths of millions
British Muslim leaders outraged after Eric Pickles says followers of Islam should 'prove their identity'
UK terror fears: My jihadist son returned from Syria mentally scarred – now he is being ignored
Nigel Farage: NHS might have to be replaced by private health insurance
Billy Crystal: 'Stop shoving gay sex scenes in my face'
'We would evict Queen from Buckingham Palace and allocate her council house,' say Greens
French court convicts three over homophobic tweets, in case hailed as a 'significant victory' by LGBT rights campaigners
- 1 The truth about 'girl things': Three cheers for Heather Watson's honesty
- 2 Man who held up 'hire me' sign at Waterloo station returns a year later with 'I'm hiring' sign
- 4 Tennis fan suing Australian Open organisers for 'failing to shade spectators' during Murray match
- 5 Syrian refugee child beaten by Istanbul Burger King manager for eating customer’s leftover food
Unpaid voluntary work: Old Royal Naval College: Join our team of friendly volu...
Negotiable: Recruitment Genius: We currently have an opportunity for you to jo...
£25000 - £29000 per annum + Benefits: Ashdown Group: The Ashdown Group have be...
£16000 - £20000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Calling all talented Level 2 qu...