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to the Times, on school pressure experiments

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Joined: 30 Jan 2004
Posts: 27

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Sent to the Times, after Saturday's report that Gordon Brown at school in the 60s suffered from a high-pressure gifted children experiment, that damaged + messed up the lives of many of the kids it was done to. Btw I live in South Queensferry, Brown lives in North Queensferry. -

" There is nothing rare at all about Gordon Brown's schooling. Having now told that story of harm, you have a responsibility to bring out the full picture, that there have been many other such cases. The same ideas were developed and used on children in conventional A-streams later.

My abuse by the gifted movement, in Wales in the early Thatcher period, was tied to the new styles of intensive homework enforcement that were becoming popular then. So it was mainstream and not dismissable as unusual, yet also was very similar to Brown's experience, and to the gifted children policy this government introduced in 1998 presumably with Brown's support! Homework load destroyed my chance to make it as a child author, or to use spare time for science interests. Children had no say over their own limits of coping. University, predicted as certain for me, instead became barred by the impossibility of explaining my story.

It is criminal that this was entirely preventable if the evidence from Brown's era had been publicised: hence proving the state has a present duty to child safety to publish all the experiences from my era. Yet I have been fighting for this for 15 years, ever since my school's discredited closure, and met only obstructionism on all fronts, some of it knowingly illegal. Your report and Brown's teenage essay both showed that any botched schooling can only be prevented having lifelong unjust discriminatory effects, by listening to its survivors directly speak out for themselves, not by leaving that to yet more theorists. "
Tue May 22, 2007 5:54 pm
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