Ever a reliable source of glimpses into leftie angst, this week the Grauniad provides us with these competing accounts, within two days of each other:
Scottish schools have tumbled from top of the class. Pupils became unwitting guinea pigs of faddish, unproven theories – and paid a high price ... England’s performance on the other hand, with some caveats, held up relatively well, even with the impact of the pandemic, and it has moved up the international tables ... there is little doubt that, educationally, England is performing significantly better than Scotland.
Peers call for urgent overhaul of secondary education in England: there is too much learning by rote and many key Tory changes should be reversed
The former article goes on to make it explicitly clear that for the Scots "faddish, unproven theories", we should read "progressive claptrap": read it if you're interested in more of the details. In terms of those baleful "Tory changes" in England, here's what the Graun says, contrasting them most favourably with Scotland:
The comparison with England is instructive ... To take the example of maths, there has been significant investment in effective models of teaching from the highest-performing systems in the world. The data shows that it is paying off, in line with the international evidence that high-quality, evidence-based curriculums are a very good and cost-effective way of improving education outcomes.
It's pretty clear that for anyone broadly on the right with the slightest regard for social equity (whether for altruistic or self-serving reasons), providing good education for the masses to facilitate any latent potential for meritorious advance is one, if not the main, central plank of policy. It ought to be so for lefties, too.
Sadly, education, and what constitutes "good" in this context, are highly contested, not least because for lefties (and Jesuits) it is an ideological battleground and they have more interest in politically-motivated indoctrination than in what might be termed "objective learning". (That's when they don't have outright malice and social sabotage in mind.) In leftist countries like China (and, in former days, Soviet Russia), they are simultaneously keen on both ideology and solid learning. Because they are in charge, they have practical concerns and an economy to build.
In the west, the left carelessly takes the economy for granted and cares not a fig for genuine learning: they (the left elite) already know all that needs knowing, and the lower orders don't need to be equipped with anything beyond some slogans of the elite's devising. They've obviously succeeded triumphantly in Scotland - once rightly proud of its education system - and wish to set about English schools in turn. A plague on them: recall what Christ said about the fate of those messing with the wellbeing of the young.