EDUCATION

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Re: EDUCATION

Post by Pettytyrant101 on Tue Sep 20, 2011 3:11 am

I got a fair few smacks and the like growing up. Was the norm. If I got caught doing something I shouldn't have been by any adult in the village I'd get a smack round the lug-hole from them, then taken home so my parents could give me another one. These days the person taking me home would probably be arrested not thanked!

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Re: EDUCATION

Post by Orwell on Tue Sep 20, 2011 10:06 am

Pettytyrant101 wrote:I got a fair few smacks and the like growing up. Was the norm. If I got caught doing something I shouldn't have been by any adult in the village I'd get a smack round the lug-hole from them, then taken home so my parents could give me another one. These days the person taking me home would probably be arrested not thanked!

Wouldn't that depend on whose home you're talkin' about... in this dangerous age - and mysterious strangers hidin' in the bushes... and all...?

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Re: EDUCATION

Post by Pettytyrant101 on Fri Nov 04, 2011 2:27 pm

Wasn't sure whether to put this here or the Freedom thread but its more a UK issue than just a Scottish one. The teachers Union in Scotland has voted to strike over the UK govenrment pension offer. Especially as it comes on the back of 2 year pay freeze.
I'm not sure if the Engish teachers have already voted for strike action or not. Kafria? But I didn't find the numbers who voted for it very impressive. The Union is going about saying its 82% showing how strongly teachers feel, what they are not mentioning so much is that turnout among their own members for the vote was only 54%. Is 82% of only half the voters eligible a mandate? Only in the strictest sense I feel but it doesn't reek of massive support for this even from teachers to me.

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Re: EDUCATION

Post by Anne on Sat Nov 05, 2011 9:57 pm

Is there any argument for wage restraint, what with Greece finances collapsing and the Euro under a lot of stress? I only raise the idea because of the Economic Gloom talk. Do we all need to show restraint until things pick up?

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Re: EDUCATION

Post by Pettytyrant101 on Sat Nov 05, 2011 10:12 pm

Well as a Care Woker my wage is whatever the current minimum wage is, if it doesn't change nor does my wage, and even when it does change it always does so significtantly below inflation I just get steadily poorer whilst doing exactly the same amount of work. Sad

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Re: EDUCATION

Post by Anne on Sat Nov 05, 2011 10:19 pm

I'm doing teaching at Uni at the moment, Petty, and all the lecturers complain their wage rises always sem to stay under the inflation rate. Perhaps if prices did not keep going up, then a wage freeze would be more acceptable. Smile

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Re: EDUCATION

Post by Kafria on Tue Jan 31, 2012 9:55 pm

Sorry - feel the need to rant here - just avert your eyes and whistle as you pass by, I'll feel better soon I am sure

Education Secretary Michael Gove has labelled campaigners against turning a school into an academy as "Trots".
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/education-16809400

I am slowly but surely growing to dislike this man intensely. In a way I have never actively disliked a politician ever before. He is arrogant, condesending and rather than actually engage in anything like meaningful debate jack boots around and simply maligns those who disagree with him.

Since he took over in education he has reviewed every policy of the previous government, thrown out what didn't suit. For those he liked he couldn't possibly leave them alone, so he rebranded them so they looked like his 'new ideas'.

He talks about more choice while introducing retrospective measures that rank schools on how many 'academic' qualifications they got.

He backs and promotes the changing - yet again - of the ofsted criteria so that satifactory actually means failing.

His department sling accusations of schools failing underacheiving pupils from primary beofre they leave school by applying a measure that actually requires the pupils to exceed their on guidance on the progress students should make between 11 and 16.

He unilaterally decides he doesn't like modular exams, so on his say so - one year after the scheme has been updated (this after the last change was in 2006) - meaning that all year 9 currently starting GCSEs this year will HAVE to take final exams and be marked on english! (really, the mark scheme guidance for 6 mark questions actually states tha even if a pupils science is perfect they cannot get more than 4 marks if their english has mistakes! - in a science exam that has jumped in expectation so much that top grade students are only getting half marks!)

He states that he hopes all school become academies before the end of his term in office, as this increases independance, denies it will have a negative impact on the services that local authorities are able to provide - even though the extra money for these schools comes from the authorities budget to provide these services (the idea being school 'buy' this provision. This will improve local authority provision as it will now be in a competetive field?!) Yet he is extremly vocal in talking about accountability of schools if they are not meeting his standards (and this week he has said you will do that be awarding the school to another provider - passed about from contractor to contractor, that's a recipe for sustained success - i don't think!)

He has dismissed over 3000 vocational qualifications as 'unequal' to GCSE's. They will no longer be counted in league table figures, the accusation being that schools put students on worthless courses to boost their standings, pointing to the report he recently comissioned, yet refuses to acknowledge that increased league table data, or changed parameters is going to have schools making choices to improve their standings in the new league tables. (These have only increased dramatically in the last 5 years in the push to personalised learning and enthusing students - we were farily firmly 'persuaded' by our local science advisor that we had to put ours in place.)

He talks about teachers a a profession that deserves respect, but denigrates us as ever turn.

In the last few months as a prfession we have been told:

too many of us are incompetant and he is going to halve the time it takes to get rid of a teacher.

Even if the school is good, if the figures aren't good enough we are coasting and should be observed more closely and sacked if we don't improve.

That we disregard the students in front of us and put them on worthless courses just to make ourselves look better.

That we fail the poorest, those in care, those who have fallen behind at primary, those who are most able at the end of primary, simply to focus on the mid band C target students (often by putting them on the wrong courses to get GCSE equivelants).

That we work too little and as well as teaching a 25 out of a 30 lesson week , marking 11 sets of books, planning said 25 lessons, attending meetings, parents evenings, school events, organising and running school trips, I should also be staying till 6 everyday and doing homework and afterschool activities (I stay 3 nights a week volutarily as it is!).

In the light of the finacial climate , not only do I not get the pay rises agreed upon to try keep salaries in line with inflation (before the current spike) I will have to pay twice as much to get less for my pension and to be entitled to the full amount I will need to be in front of a class of upto 30 16 year olds until I am 68


ARRGGGHHHHHHHHH!

I was too young to understand the hatred that Maggie inspired, I am beginning to get the idea!

Right deep breathes and a bottle of buckie to ease the frustration - it's alright I'll be fine in a min!

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Re: EDUCATION

Post by Orwell on Tue Jan 31, 2012 10:48 pm

Oh Kafria, surely in difficult financial times Education is an unnecessary expense -- especially as the Public Schools will be able to keep going with secret Government payments, ensuring the right kind of people are still being encouraged and available to take on "Leadership" positions in society. It's a time for Brittish exceptionalism surely, not Left wing theatrics! Very Happy

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Education

Post by leelee on Wed Feb 01, 2012 1:13 am

Eldorion wrote:I have to sympathize. In the US, at least, we have a "one size fits all" education system through 12th grade (age 17/18 for most people). I can see the merits in a system that has multiple tracks for the high school years (after about 11 or 12): vocational, college prep, etc. It is a little worrying to me that an important decision such as which track to follow would be forced on kids at such a young age, but a part of me thinks it would be better than trying to force all kids to go down the same educational path. study
I cannot speak for the other provinces in my country but here almost from kindergarten you can steer your child either direction. If for instance you have a child with an anxiety disorder or autism or any learning disability,even if you have a child that is quite tactile and perhaps does not sleep well at night so needs extra sleep in the morning when he or she would normally be in school you can take one of several options.Our little one had problems at birth that affected her so that she has slight autistic tendencies and anxiety and a need to sleep in the morning because of the anxiety. I opted to not medicate her so she goes part of the week to a specialized school that caters to as many problems as there are children from kindergarten to grade 12.
She has a speech therapist one day, a math specialist one day. She has a grief counsellor one day a week for the grief she is going through, and besides that each child is allotted from the government five to six hundred dollars a year to particpate in extra activities. We have never used the funds but they are there and many do. So the child if inclined toward the arts can take lessons in playing an instrument or the dance or acting or painting or even hockey or figure skating. The children are all admitted for free at the Science institute where you can spend eight hours and barely touch the surface of hands on things to do. Right now the children that are co ordinated enough are skiing a couple of hours away at a good resort. And some children and our girl will too next year, some attend a regular public school part of the week and a specialized one the rest. If someone does not have a computer they are given funds for it and their cable bill is paid in three month increments. This keeps a lot of children with health or anger problems, ADD or just depression or family troubles from falling through the cracks and they can have one on one help through all their years. And if drug problems or alcohol or fighting at home ensues they are given every help possible to keep them in school. So trades are played up and there is even a uni program that has you study part time and apprentice part time. I think all this is because having been such a rich province once and then falling to such a destitute province something had to be done to pull us up and get people into jobs that they were suited to and would stick with and it has been working for a long time now. Your son Would be given every help to get into such a trade and apprentice and even move up from there. No one would think anything of his poor attitude because it is so common and a person needs to feel they are doing something that matters in his or her life.
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Re: EDUCATION

Post by Pettytyrant101 on Wed Feb 01, 2012 6:31 pm

really, the mark scheme guidance for 6 mark questions actually states tha even if a pupils science is perfect they cannot get more than 4 marks if their english has mistakes!- Kafria

I have to admit to being in two minds about this. When I was at school you got marked down for your english in every subject. I remember loosing 10 marks off a history paper because my overuse of the phrase "this was due to" annoyed him so much he took a mark off for every one- but he taught me when presenting my case to vary my language. I didn't lose a single mark for it again. If he had been constrained to not coment on such a thing but only mark whether I got the facts right I may never have learnt that valuable lesson in writing.

Im against Acadamies both in principle and how they seem to being operated by taking money from already strained local authority school budgets- but fortuntely education is a devolved matter and we dont have them in Scotland.


"He has dismissed over 3000 vocational qualifications as 'unequal' to GCSE's."

This I really dont get- even if what he says is true about schools using it to hide poor results it still sends out the worng message and seems to say a vocational qualification is somehow lesser than an academic- which is fine until your pipes burst at which point you dont call a historian.
The opposite to this is happening in Scotland the SNP are trying to shift more of the focus onto vocational and engineering and sciences in order to boost the availabilty to high tech companies paying good wages of available employees. They also created a lot of apprenticeships with more on the way which are in partnership with exisiting companies so that there are jobs waiting at the end of them.
Why England in the current economic climate is taking the entriely opposite approach I have no idea. It seems a policy of desperation like hacking away at the the hull of your ship for firewood.

On how teachers are treated I couldn't agree more- it is appaling and you seem to be getting undermined continually by those who should be backing you up. The situation here I imagine from a teachers persepctive feels similar, it is probably an area that still requires some addressing but I suspect as our teachers are not going through quite the same attacks as english ones currently are its not quite so bad up here.

"I was too young to understand the hatred that Maggie inspired, I am beginning to get the idea!"

At times it feels lie she never left! We have a government who are overuling the House of Lords to push through legisaltion to take sickness benefits from recovering cancer patients- makes 'Maggie Thatcher milk-snatcher' look postitevly generous.


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Re: EDUCATION

Post by Pettytyrant101 on Fri Feb 03, 2012 9:22 am

Maybe its time to cross the border Kafria and become an honourary Scot before we go our own way.

There were 51,441 full time equivalent teachers in 2011, 657 fewer than the revised 2010 figure of 52,098.
The average class size for pupils in P1, 2 and 3 rose slightly from 22.4 in 2010 to 22.5 in 2011.
Education Secretary Mike Russell said the current number of teachers in local authority schools exceeded the local government agreement target of 51,131.

The statistical bulletin also revealed that pupil to teacher ratios also increased slightly, from 13.3 in 2010 to 13.4 in 2011.
About 66% of 2010-11 probationer teachers were in permanent or temporary employment in publicly funded schools in September 2011 - a rise from 58% on the previous year.
About 98.9% of P1 pupils were in classes of 25 or fewer and the overall average class size in primary school was 22.7%, up from 22.5% in 2010.

The proportion of schools reported as being in good or satisfactory condition has increased from 61% in April 2007 to 80% in 2011.
The figures also said the proportion of young people entering higher or further education has increased from 56.0% in 2008 to 63.0% in 2011.
The proportion of leavers entering employment increased from 18.5% in September 2010 to 19.3% in September 2011
Mr Russell, Education Secretary went on: "The average class size for primary 1 is down from 21.1 in 2010 to 20.5 in 2011, a new record low. The number of P1 pupils in classes of more than 25 is down from 6,896 to 638 in 2011, a total reduction of 90% since the legislation was introduced."

Althoughthere is a bit of a cufuddle at th emoment over the introduction of the new exams. One of the largets local authorities, and the one with the best education rate in the country has put off implimenting it for a year. The SNP want it rolled out from nexy tyear (meaning those goinginto S2 next year would be the first to actually sit the exam).
However it is worth noting there doesn't seem to be a problem over the idea- teachers and Head Teachers are in favour of the new exams- but they are sayng the need another year to prepare for implimenting it to make sure they get it right.
The Education Secretary says in response,"The consensus among our partners is strongly in favour of uniform implementation of CfE and new qualifications across all local authorities. However, EIS (the teachers Union) are a valued partner so I have arranged a meeting with them to discuss their position on 9 February."

So at the moment at least its still fairly friendly on the surface.



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Re: EDUCATION

Post by halfwise on Sun Feb 05, 2012 2:48 pm

I taught teenagers for a good long while. Very fond memories of that so long as I was left alone; it was when the system tried to intervene that things went sideways. Teachers are inundated with waves of the 'new thing' imposed from above, which, as has been pointed out before on this thread, are never new. A good teacher collects a bag of tricks and uses whatever is appropriate to each situation. And they have to do things their own way: kids respond to authenticity.

HERE'S a list of the ONLY THINGS GUARANTEED TO WORK:
1. Hire good teachers (no objective test: you know one when you see one)
2. Get Parents involved
3. Stay the Hell out of their way.

In other words, the system should concentrate only on hiring the best and providing support, not dictating cures. Make sure the supervisors are good (you know one when you see one) and trust them to manage the teachers. The reason I keep saying 'you know one when you see one' is because it's a purely human endeavor, all the numbers and testing etc show but a fraction of what's going on.
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Re: EDUCATION

Post by Orwell on Mon Feb 06, 2012 7:49 am

halfwise wrote:In other words, the system should concentrate only on hiring the best and providing support, not dictating cures. Make sure the supervisors are good (you know one when you see one) and trust them to manage the teachers. The reason I keep saying 'you know one when you see one' is because it's a purely human endeavor, all the numbers and testing etc show but a fraction of what's going on.

My Missus is a teacher and would probably agree, if all her whining is anything to go by. Core function is no longer of value. It's all about doing everything but what you train for, for no other good reason than some knob head and/or pointy head and/or political head thinks he/she knows better than the foot soldier without genuinely seeking their thoughts irrespective of how many 'Meetings' they hold with them -- all these 'heads' are management types. (Btw, my Missus can't stomach 'Meetings").

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Re: EDUCATION

Post by halfwise on Tue Feb 07, 2012 3:14 am

Hurrah for the Missus! If she papers over her windows, puts out a rumor among the higher ups that she's dead, but give the kids a secret knock signal, I guaraneffin'tee they'll show up for class each day (because now it's ~subversive~) and get the best damn eddication they've ever had.

I left eddication because I'd had enough of the malarky, but I still look back on it as the best, the most real thing I've ever done. You don't realize these things when you're running uphill against the avalanche, but when your missus finally gets a break, she will look back with immense satisfaction.
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Re: EDUCATION

Post by Orwell on Tue Feb 07, 2012 6:10 am

halfwise wrote:I left eddication because I'd had enough of the malarky, but I still look back on it as the best, the most real thing I've ever done. You don't realize these things when you're running uphill against the avalanche, but when your missus finally gets a break, she will look back with immense satisfaction.

I Missus said to say, "I can't wait." Very Happy

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Re: EDUCATION

Post by Pettytyrant101 on Wed Mar 21, 2012 8:59 am

Althoughthere is a bit of a cufuddle at the moment over the introduction of the new exams. One of the largets local authorities, and the one with the best education rate in the country has put off implimenting it for a year. The SNP want it rolled out from nexy year...teachers and Head Teachers are in favour of the new exams- but they are sayng the need another year to prepare for implimenting it to make sure they get it right.
The Education Secretary says in response,"The consensus among our partners is strongly in favour of uniform implementation of CfE and new qualifications across all local authorities. However, EIS (the teachers Union) are a valued partner so I have arranged a meeting with them to discuss their position on 9 February." - me a few posts up!

Just an update on this from todays BBC Scotland news site. It seems all has been resolved to everyones satisfaction (for now):

'the Scottish government said schools would have the "option" to delay the introduction. Ministers have also agreed to a £3.5m package aimed at ensuring that schools are better prepared. However, the government hopes most schools will not feel the need to do that after announcing the £3.5m package of support measures, including extra training and course materials for the new lessons.
Teachers were concerned about the impact the new qualifications would have on their workload.
EIS (Teachers Union) general secretary designate Larry Flanagan said the package of measures was "a major step forward" and a "significant and measurable investment in the senior phase of CfE, which should allow schools to move ahead with greater confidence".
He added: "The framework agreed allows for schools to make clear and informed decisions which will help reassure parents and pupils that their best interests are being served."
Mr Mike Russell, Scottish Education Minister, said: "We have been listening to the concerns of teachers over the past few weeks and I thank the EIS for their positive contribution to our discussions.
"This package of measures aims to help ease the workload of teachers as they prepare new courses for the school year ahead."
Mike Russell said the measures would "ease the workload" of teachers. He added: "We want to improve the life chances of all our children and young people and it is vitally important that we remain on track with Curriculum for Excellence for the 54,000 pupils currently in S2 and deliver new qualifications on time.
"I want to reassure pupils and parents that we continue on course."
Iain Ellis, chairman of the National Parent Forum of Scotland (NPFS), said: "The National Parent Forum of Scotland is pleased that additional resources have been made available to support Curriculum for Excellence, particularly in this challenging economic climate.
"We anticipate that this enhanced support will ensure that implementation of the curriculum is ambitious and creative, and is focused on delivering excellent learning experiences and outcomes for all of our children."


Nice to see these things can be resolved if you have a government willing to get everyone round the table and acually try to address their corcerns instead of telling them how its going to be.
The opposition parties of course are trying to paint it as a u-turn by the SNP etc- but its exactly this sort of politics, based in talking to people, that gave the SNP such an unprecedented victory in the election.
I await with interest but no plaesure to see how things go when the UK coalition turns its full attention from their destruction of the English and Welsh NHS to its education system. Should make for an interesting comparative study.

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Re: EDUCATION

Post by halfwise on Wed Mar 21, 2012 1:31 pm

"(the teachers Union) are a valued partner "

"We have been listening to the concerns of teachers over the past few weeks"

"This package of measures aims to help ease the workload of teachers"

Reading this makes me feel like going through a blissful drunken fantasy. drunken
Does such a government, really, truly exist?! If so I think it must come from a spirit of subdivision into a manageable size, and maybe all countries should look into splitting up.

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Re: EDUCATION

Post by Kafria on Tue Mar 27, 2012 9:12 pm

Yeah we're valued alright!

today's 'gem' below

Schools in England should be fined if pupils leave school with poor literacy skills, an independent report into last year's riots says.

It adds they should demonstrate how they are building pupils' characters, and give careers advice to each child.

In its final report into disturbances, the Riots, Communities and Victims Panel puts schools firmly in the spotlight for preventing future riots.
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/education-17525940

Saturday's headline

Education Secretary Michael Gove has told head teachers the pace of school reform in England needs to accelerate.

Speaking to the Association of School and College Leaders, Mr Gove said: "Over the next ten years the world we inhabit will change massively."
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/education-17481888

This from the man who has told confrence this week that he 'values' teachers, despite basically undermining us all and acussing us of letting down a generation of kids by 'failing' in international league tables.

Or the following from the man who in the last four months has done little other than issue a string of damming indictments at his own profession.

Schools are too often asked to make up for wider failings in families and communities, the Chief Inspector of Schools, Sir Michael Wilshaw has said.

"Schools can step into the vacuum, setting good examples where few exist at home," he said.

He told the annual conference of the Association of School and College Leaders that schools' moral purpose had never been more important.

But, he said, all was not wonderful in the garden.
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/education-17481313

I could do without the 'support' of either of these gentlemen! Rolling Eyes

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Re: EDUCATION

Post by Pettytyrant101 on Tue Mar 27, 2012 11:44 pm

"they should demonstrate how they are building pupils' characters"

How in the name buggery is that a teachers job? And the State should not be molding the characters of children- dictators do that Evil or Very Mad Who decides what is character? Or how to measure it on a league table or a bar graph?

"If people say 'It's all just a bit too much', my view is 'man up!'", Grove said.

I suspect he may be Australian you know. Suspect



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Re: EDUCATION

Post by Pettytyrant101 on Fri Apr 06, 2012 1:57 am

Wasn't sure to put this here or the freedom thread as it interests me from both perspectives.
The two biggest Teachers Unions are talking about increasing their strike action- it is largely in protest against the pension deal being offered by the government, but there are a lot of other factors being protested against as well, but only in England, whereas the Pension part is UK wide as Pensions are not devolved.

This is from the BBC-

'The two unions meeting this weekend have already taken strike action over pensions alongside other unions in walkouts which closed about two-thirds of schools in the UK in November.
Since then, the NUT has begun what it says is its next stage of protests on the issue - local industrial action - often linked with other public sector workers.
On 28 March, union members went on strike in many London schools, with disruption in 60% of them. About one in five of the capital's schools was closed, the government said.
NASUWT (The National Association of Schoolmasters-Union of Women Teachers) moved from strike action in November to a work-to-rule.
A spokeswoman for the Department for Education said: "This deal is as good as it gets and takes the right balance - guaranteeing teachers one of the best pensions available but keeping a lid on rising costs for the taxpayer. We've been in serious talks for months with unions to address their concerns and reach a final settlement. "

Now the Unions are likely to get support in Scotland on the pension grounds I would imagine, however there is another list of grievences;

'Those from England will attack some of the key changes made since the coalition came to power nearly two years ago.
Delegates will focus on the moves to get more schools to become academies - schools which are outside local authority control - and the creation of free schools. The unions say the change is breaking up the state school system and will lead to a lack of co-ordinated planning.
Teachers at the NUT will hear calls to scrap England's schools inspectorate Ofsted and criticism of the government in England's plans to make it easier for head teachers to remove poor teachers.
The unions say the changes are a "bully's charter", the government that they will simplify a bureaucratic system.
"The depth of anger and frustration is evident in the motions balloted by members for debate. There has been no respite from the attacks on every aspect of a teacher's working life." '

This last stuff and I am sure Kafria can add more to the list, besides been spoken down to constently by the Education Minister, is all England only complaints, as apart from pensions, education is a devolved issue in Scotland- so whilst I am sure there will be sympathy in Scotland among teachers it will be interesting to see how much actual support there will be for strikes north of the border given Scottish teachers do not seem overall as unhappy as their English counterparts.


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Re: EDUCATION

Post by Kafria on Sat Apr 07, 2012 9:42 pm

Will comment on this soon. Tried tonight, four hours sleep after the hen do..... I got half way through a sentence and forgot what my point was... not a good way to express myself. I'll wait till I'm a little more with it!

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Re: EDUCATION

Post by Orwell on Sun Apr 08, 2012 12:22 am

Kafria wrote:Will comment on this soon. Tried tonight, four hours sleep after the hen do..... I got half way through a sentence and forgot what my point was... not a good way to express myself. I'll wait till I'm a little more with it!

I have the same problem with your sentences, Kafria. Very Happy

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Re: EDUCATION

Post by Kafria on Sun Apr 08, 2012 8:26 am

Sad




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Re: EDUCATION

Post by Pettytyrant101 on Sun Apr 08, 2012 11:23 am

I think Orwell must be over worked or soemething at the moment Kafria-that was a little sharp out of nowhere- shame on you Orwell! Evil or Very Mad
And when your thoughts are gathered and the Hen-Night aftereffects worn off I am interested on your take on this. (Thats it! Orwell is jealous of you being on a Hen-night)

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Re: EDUCATION

Post by Amarië on Sun Apr 08, 2012 11:40 am

It though Orwell was admitting that Kafria is too smart and he can't understand what she is saying...? scratch

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