Full results for the Sunday Times/YouGov poll are now up here. As you’d might expect, given it’s silly season and it’s the only story in the news, the focus is again on the riots.

On the regular leadership trackers there is little change – David Cameron’s job approval stands at minus 12 (from minus 14 last week, and typical of late), Ed Miliband’s is minus 18 (from minus 22, still holding onto the increase he got from hackgate), Nick Clegg’s is minus 42.

As in the Channel 4 poll yesterday the primary causes of the riots are seen as criminality, gang culture and bad parenting (all named by 61% of people when asked to pick the main causes, and the top three when asked to pick the ONE main cause). That is followed, a long way behind, by social deprivation (23%) and unemployment (18%). Very few people though that the government’s cuts (10%) or poor policing (11%) were amongst the main causes.

45% think Cameron responded well to the riots (52% badly), 44% thought Boris responded well (45% badly). These are significantly up on similar questions YouGov asked for the Sun when the riots were still ongoing, which had 28% saying Cameron was doing well and only 24% for Boris – people are presumably viewing their reactions a lot more positively now things have quietened down. In contrast Theresa May is still seen as having reacted badly to the riots (31% well, 53% badly). For the opposition, 40% thought Miliband did well (40% badly) and Harriet Harman 26% well, 44% badly.

66% think the police responded well to the riots, with 31% saying badly – again this is significantly up on YouGov’s poll for the Sun in the week when the number thinked they’d handled it well was 52%. Asked how much confidence they have in the police to protect people and property from rioters 53% of people have some or a lot of confidence, 37% do not have a lot of confidence, 9% have none at all.

On the police cuts 56% of people think they should be cancelled, even if this means bigger cuts elsewhere. 23% of people think they should go ahead. Amongst the COnservative party’s own supporters 47% think the police cuts should be cancelled.

Finally there were some questions on Cameron’s “broken society”. YouGov re-asked a question from back in 2009 about whether people though Britain was a broken society, in regard of the area people themselves lived in, and in relation to the country as a whole. 37% think it is true in relation to the area they live (which is significantly down from 2009 when YouGov originally asked the question) with people most likely to agree in London. 74% think society is broken in Britain as a whole, virtually unchanged from 2009. Comparing ourselves to other European countries, 38% of people think British society is more broken than in other countries, 13% that British society is stronger and more stable and 39% that they are much the same.

There is very little confidence in the government’s policies solving the problems of “broken Britain” – only 22% think the government’s education policies will improve or mend society, 27% their welfare policies, 26% their law and order polices and 22% their economic policies. In every case a larger proportion of respondents think the government’s policies will make the problems in British society worse.


266 Responses to “YouGov/Sunday Times on the riots”

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  1. @ OLDNAT

    “Is it possible that small countries are more likely to recognise that they don’t have a monopoly of wisdom within their borders than bigger countries?”

    It is.

    It is also possible that senior English police officers have become introspective , self important unwilling to admit fault , confused about their objectives, un-nerved by criticism of previous heavy handed policing & generally uncertain about their place in society.

  2. Liz Hancock

    I wrote an earlier version of this two days ago, but it’s still relevant:

    There already seems a lot of queries raised by Wandsworth Council starting eviction proceedings against a family because the son has been charged (not even convicted) of some offence. Equally Labour Manchester Council are saying they will evict the family of a 12-year-old boy convicted of stealing a £7.49 bottle of wine (the boy’s father is currently in prison presumably for something less serious as that doesn’t seem to have worried Manchester Council).

    The councils are relying on vague behaviour clauses in the tenants contracts. But such things are meant to cover tenants behaviour as tenants, not whatever the Council doesn’t like about them this week. And presumably if you can evict a family for such a small offence, equity means you’ll be obliged to chuck people out on the street for a parking ticket.

    If these cases ever gets to the Courts, these Councils will be told to stop wasting everyone’s time. Even if they are able to get some level of the judicial system to approve it, it will be overturned higher up. Apart from anything else it would re-write English Contract Law. I suspect the eviction notices will quietly be pulled at the courthouse door, with lots of huffing and puffing about final warnings.

    Of course the usual suspects will use this to denounce the Human Rights Act for er giving rights to humans. Funny how gesture politics works nowadays.

    Even politically it’s stupid. Lots of parents will be thinking of times when their children were uncontrollable or even able to do anti-social things just to annoy their parents. Well they certainly can now. Empathy will make this sort of action unpopular.

    Of course parents could throw their unruly children out on the street to keep their tenancies. That’s sure to help the situation a lot.

  3. @ Liz Hancock

    “I think this is appalling. Why should the whole family pay for the behaviour of one of them?”

    Because their tenancy agreement stipulates acceptable behaviour of the whole family ( & indeed visitors)

    A tenancy agreement presumably signed by the mother———before that mother declared to the court & the Press that she is not responsible for the behaviour of her child.

  4. @ ChrisLane1945

    FWIW, I am very much in favour of the ‘obvious’ but expensive solution: Smaller class sizes for all ages.

    IMO, nothing makes a greater difference than the undivided attention of a skilled & motivated teacher. Their value cannot be over-stated as mentors & an alternative ‘parental’ influence, when positive parental influence is in short supply.

    But teachers cannot be all that to 30+ kids at a time. So my thoughts are: Smaller class sizes for schools in troubled areas; in all schools would be even better.

    There’s not much you can do about that, on your own. But I’d like to see teachers – & their unions – agitating for smaller class sizes, along with fighting for teachers’ rights to receive the remuneration & pension which their contract said they’d receive… I’m expecting an awful lot of teachers, aren’t I? Sorry about that.
    8-)

  5. Woodsman

    The whole concept also begs the question – why stop there? Why not directly elected Health Chiefs, Education Chiefs, Social Service or Army, Navy, RAF Chiefs? Perhaps we could do away with politicians altogether?

    Well I’ve already had my say on the elected police chiefs above (it’s not as alarming as it sounds but it’s just as silly). However in this case I think you mean “we could do away withnon-politicians altogether”. Because if they’re elected, that’s what they are.

  6. OldNat

    “Did you mean that “our” police officers are brilliant, while police in other countries aren’t?”

    What characterises police officers in my very limited experience in not “stupid” or “brilliant” but extremely well trained. Anything good about the police comes from that.

  7. Amber

    Thank you.

    Re:-“Therefore, the Met & the Manchester forces have already evaluated the program”-I would like to think that is true-but given the attitudes which become more apparent by the day, am not convinced.

    Still-DC & his team always knew the magnitude of the structural change required in UK & it’s institutions.

    It was always going to be a battle against the forces of conservatism ( small c:-) )-didn’t Blair say he bore the marks on his back-wished he had moved reform on more quickly etc?

    I suspect we have got around to the Met & the Police sooner than DC would have wished-but we are where we are.
    The circumstances which cost so many people so much -including their lives , I feel sure will make DC even more determined to press on with what thinks is the appropriate response & reform.

    I was delighted to see IDS brought into the project.

    It will be an interesting one to observe.

  8. Can I just ask a question of all parents here ( I am not a parent) – Are all your children obedient and do exactly as you tell them to? Do you know what they get up to when they are not in your company? I ask this because everyone is blaming the parents and I wonder if that is fair?

  9. Local Authorities have a legal duty to house homeless families within their boundaries.

    I’m not going to comment on the moral arguments against evicting an entire family because- for example- their 13 year old idiot son did something both criminal and immature (and how many posters on here with kids/ grand kids can hold up their hands and proclaim none of their offspring have ever done one or both of these). There have been enough articulate posts on that over the last 48 hours.

    I am simply stating that it seems marvellously pythonesque to evict a family and then rehouse them- as Wandsworth (for example) will HAVE to do!

    Unless it can convince another LB to take them or they choose to move ultra-borough themselves (always a suspicion this may be one of the motivations- remember Lady Porters Tory ‘ethnic cleansing’ housing policy from the 90’s).

    The Lib Dems will NEVER vote to repeal the Housing legislation that makes LB/ LA’s have to house homeless families (not even the orange bookers) – however the families became homeless.

    All this rhetoric is just that and in a few months we’ll all (well most of us) be laughing when we recall the weeks in mid-summer when the Tories were talking about such a- to put it politely- idiosyncratic policy proposal.

    BTW this issue also applies to Labours ‘neighbours from hell’ evictions. In all these cases the nuisance neighbours are rehoused.

  10. @ ChrisLane1945

    I am with Amberstar on class sizes, but not the rest.

    If teachers and their unions were to be militant I would like it to be over aggressive or violent behaviour of some pupils, particularly towards teachers but also towards other pupils. Sometimes I hear some horror stories from friends, but no one seems willing to speak, I suppose because it makes them look bad ‘Why can’t you control your class?’.

    I remember reading a year or so back about some African children on the starvation line, who walked 4 miles to school to get an education.

    I do not think that we rate education high enough or appreciate the educators. In India the old top caste was the teacher/priest, which was above kings, merchants etc. I am not advocating we adopt a caste system, but I do think it would be nice if we treasured education more.

    When my wife starting teaching it was in a secondary modern in a working class car factory area. Most households had pretty well paid jobs and owned their own home, but they were keen for their children to do more and were very supportive of school. A lot of the children ended up with good qualifications and fulfilling jobs away from car manufacturing, which was a good thing as ultimately the factory closed.

  11. LIZ

    The answer from any honest parent to your first two questions is no.

    But that’s not the point.

    Magistrates have been critical of absent parents at their hearings. We have had one mother who says she is not responsible for her children.

    Parents do their best to instil the correct values into their children. It doesn’t always work ……….but they are always resopnsible for their children’s actions……..who else could be?

  12. @Henry

    “We are back to DC is worse than useless and the police are great particularly the ones who criticise DC, and no DC is great but the police are useless, particularly the ones who criticise DC.”

    This is a parody of what people are saying and I think you know that it is. I made a comment about why I think some posters are making particularly intemperate remarks about Sir Hugh Orde, citing loyalty to the Government and partisanship as the main cause rather than any reasoned analysis of what he was actually saying, but the argument is much more lively and interesting than you’re claiming. It’s the refuge of the blogging scoundrel, and entirely condescending, to claim that the quality of debate has gone “downhill” when dissenting voices appear that depart from your view of the world.

    You really musn’t be so sensitive when the Government you support is criticised or when posters appear on these pages who aren’t cheerleaders for the politicians you admire.

  13. Colin

    “Parents do their best to instil the correct values into their children”

    And some parents successfully instil their values into their children, even though those values are what most of us would describe those values as anti-social.

    Again, nothing new in that. That has always been the case for some. Schools/society are unlikely to make much (though some is possible) headway with the most hardcore families whose value system is not that of the law and mainstream society.

    As always, the need is to work with the families who are contiguous to, and potentially influenced by such families.

    Two scenarios impressed me in the 60s.

    1. The idealistic new Labour Housing Convenor in Saltcoats was concerned about the concentration of problem families in certain streets, and embarked on a policy of spreading them throughout the town. He soon reversed the policy, and recreated the “ghettoes” because the evidence was soon there that these families were damaging the lives of many others.

    2. The old Airdrie Burgh Council had a policy of harassing antisocial families by a series of warnings, then moving them to a different street. At each stage, the number of families who were resistant to the social norms of the area reduced. The most intransigent were eventually moved to a set of miners rows outside the Burgh Boundary.

    Did the Saltcoats and Airdrie policies make it less likely that the children of the most antisocial families could be reintegrated into society’s norms? Probably.

    Did these policies make it less likely that the children of stressed families would adopt these antisocial norms, through geographical separation? Probably.

    How do you avoid such decisions condemning large numbers of people to being outlawed from society? I have no idea.

  14. Crossbat

    TingedFringe
    So are we now going to engage in a partisan battle to argue who is the most partisan? How meta Fringe

    and

    chrislane1945
    I also think that sometimes suppoters of the Government get needled when the Government runs into … criticisms.

    and

    Henry
    We are back to DC is worse than useless and the police are great particularly the ones who criticise DC, and no DC is great but the police are useless, particularly the ones who criticise DC.”

    I would add that and if people don’t want to play our silly games we stoop to personal insults.

    Its you that’s the scoundrel.

  15. The football has started so this latest poll will need to be taken with an atom of salt followed by a quark of it in a few days’ time.

    I have never known a time when the voters were more apathetic and I just wonder what would actually move them to have surprising views, at least those that would get politicians feeling either apprehensive or motivated.

    I think we are due barbie weather this week. We’ve laid in the necessary for our visitors. It won’t include a newspaper.

  16. I think that it is a very odd state of affairs when a right wing
    goverment is at odds with the police.
    Tinged Fringe,
    regarding EMs call for a public enquiry.Perhaps I am
    wrong but I see him as a conviction politician.He will find
    that money somehow.As for the result being against
    Labour. surely it is good to have a politician who is
    prepared to risk that, rather than one following the Daily
    Mails agenda,knee jerk policies and all.

  17. Howard

    The football has started so this latest poll will need to be taken with an atom of salt followed by a quark of it in a few days’ time.

    Some early surprises in the results as well. I think Arsen needs to buy big if he wants his team to stay up with the big boys.

  18. Henry/Chris Lane 1945

    Chris do you anticipate that there are many rioters among your class, if so feed back from them would be very interesting.

  19. @Henry

    “I would add that and if people don’t want to play our silly games we stoop to personal insults.
    Its you that’s the scoundrel.”

    I’m, sorry, but I haven’t got the faintest idea what your last post was trying to say, either in the quotations you cited from other posters or the last comment that I have repeated above.

    I don’t want to get in a tit-for-tat exchange of posts with you, and Anthony, quite rightly, probably wouldn’t allow us to do so, but I rest my case entirely with the final comment I made to you in my previous post.

    I suggest we now move onwards and upwards.

  20. AMBER and HENRY.

    Thank you for your responses.

    I would like to see the re opening of LEA behaviour units where misbehaving students are sent for persistently very poor behaviour. Most of them were closed in the 1980’s.

    I welcome Mr Gove’s intention to allow permanent exclusion by the Head Teachers to be un challenged by ‘Appeals Panelss’

    I also welcome Mr Gove’s idea of creating a truly national History Curriculum.

    Pupils do need to know, however, that there are well paid jobs to which they can aspire.

    Some heroic teachers do a lot to work with parents pn basic skills of parenting.

    In terms of contracts, the 1265 hour contract idea (1986) has been damaging, in my view, since it led to a reduction of voluntary activities in schools. Saturday morning school sport is now almost exclusively a private school activity.

  21. Reporting tonight (this on TG site but also on FT and I should imagine others shortly);

    “The Liberal Democrats are pushing for the eventual disbanding of the 50p rate of tax to see the implementation of a new land tax levied on properties above £1m.”

    I wonder if more individuals/ families would be affected by a new tax on properties that are worth £1 million- as opposed to a 10% differential at the top end of the income tax code on declared income of 150k and above

    Cable said in the election campaign- when defending the mansion house tax- that it is far more difficult to conceal wealth stored in property than income which can be hidden (legally or otherwise)/ wired overseas/ accountancy dimished etc etc

    So I imagine (?) this “wealthy land tax” proposal will more than pay for itself and raise more revenue for George than the 50p band…

    A very interesting develplemnt tonight and one to watch.

  22. Liz,
    I have three children who have gone through university
    and a fourth about to start in September.I have absolutely
    no idea what they got up to during their time there,in some
    ways ignorance is bliss.However one has to hope that we
    instilled our standards and basic decency to them during
    their childhood.

  23. Chris Lane 1945

    I would like to see the re opening of LEA behaviour units where misbehaving students are sent for persistently very poor behaviour. Most of them were closed in the 1980?s.

    Is that on the cards?

  24. Rob Sheffield

    As Anthony pointed out the other day there is no obligation to re-house those made ‘intentionally homeless’. However in cases where there are children or those otherwise vulnerable, the Council may have to re-house anyway (or take the kids into care which is much more expensive). It is also arguable in this case whether there is ‘intention’ on the rest of the family or even the offender.

    You’re right that the Lib Dems won’t repeal the Housing legislation that meant families don’t end up on the streets. Apart from anything else it was originally a Liberal private members measure passed in the aftermath of “Cathy Come Home”.

    Wandsworth Council would probably love to get rid of their tenants. They were certainly investigated for ‘classist cleansing’ a la Lady* Porter, but I think managed to just escape prosecution.

    AS I said above this would all be wonderful news for lawyers if anything was really happening, but it’s basically just chest-beating (which is why Wandsworth is acting now, because later they won’t get in the papers).

    *She was stripped of her Damehood, but can still call herself ‘Lady’ because her husband was knighted. Funny place Britain.

  25. HENRY

    Sadly, no.

    The Units were expensive- in the short term.

    In the long term, I suspect they were very good.

    Both parties went for something called ‘inclusion’.

    Therefore in schools we face continued debilitating ‘low level’ disruption with appalling language, hurtful comments shouted down corridors, all sorts of reasons given why pupils cannot behave, do homework or attend detentions.

  26. chrislane1945

    “I also welcome Mr Gove’s idea of creating a truly national History Curriculum.”

    Which nation? and why was there a problem with your previous curriculum? Was it too international?

    How will that help you deal with the “rioters” in your classroom?

  27. Very impressive Birmingham Peace gathering today, shown on the BBC.

    On my beach run tonight (Bournemouth) I was reflecting on why ‘lefties’ might be partisan on the riot issue.

    The PM made a strong attack on the Blair approach to crime with ‘hug the hoody’- but that might just have been spin (by whom I wonder?)

    Resenment I think.

    ANN and LIZ
    We also have four children, ages 25-14. A lot of it is luck. But we tried to ensure the ‘right’ peer groups for them: and we could not trust the local state sec. schools, sadly.

    Why is it that the majority, the majority of the pupils getting three grade A’s in the ‘facilitating subjects’ are from the private sector. (7% of pupils). ? These subjects were set out by the Russell Group of Univs.

  28. @Ann in Wales

    “As for the result being against
    Labour. surely it is good to have a politician who is
    prepared to risk that, rather than one following the Daily
    Mails agenda,knee jerk policies and all.”

    I think the right-wing press, who have hi-jacked the public discourse in this country for so long, whilst laughingly protesting at the same time that we live in a society dominated by “liberal dogma”, are in retreat now. Post Hackgate, I sense a new atmosphere and, maybe, the emergence of less craven politicians who are may not likely to be quite so be cowed by what you call the “Daily Mail” agenda. Milliband is well placed to challenge the phoney consensus that has driven so much of our politics and policy formation these past 30 years or so. In my view, the overbearing influence and dominance of this skewed public discourse has been one of the main reasons why our politicians, of all colours, have failed to address the real causes of the social fissures that emerged in all their ugliness last week.

    By the way did anybody earlier in the week see that extraordinary interview with a young white gentleman who obviously had sympathy with the looters and vandals? A TV reporter was getting some vox pops on the street in a riot-torn city when he received some heckling. He turned to ask the young man what he was shouting about. He said he thought there should be some more looting and rioting and good luck to the people indulging in it. He was then asked why he had these views and he said this; “Well what chance have they got with all these Poles over here taking our jobs.” I almost expected him to disappear into the distance with a copy of the Star, or the Sun, or the Express or the Mail or the NOW rolled up in his back pocket.

  29. chrislane1945

    “we tried to ensure the ‘right’ peer groups for them: and we could not trust the local state sec. schools, sadly. ”

    That reads oddly. Do you mean that your “local state sec. schools” contained pupils that weren’t “right”? Why is it “sad” that local schools contained local pupils, not exclusively those that you wanted your kids to mix with?

  30. @All

    Thank you for your replies. I recognise that parents are responsible for their children but they are often battling against the influences of others in society like the Ad Man who is consistently enticing their children to get the latest trainers, mobiles etc. Shouldn’t some of the criticism be aimed at our consumerist society?

  31. @ Henry

    If teachers and their unions were to be militant I would like it to be over aggressive or violent behaviour of some pupils, particularly towards teachers but also towards other pupils.
    ——————————————————
    I would think that smaller class sizes would improve behaviour.

    I have zero tolerance towards violence. I’d send violent pupils to a separate behavioural unit (as ChrisLane suggests).
    8-)

  32. OLD Nat, last post of the evening: MUFC are on.

    i. The new curriculum should foster pride in the national story, without of course missing out the ‘bad bits’

    ii. In terms of state schools.
    a. Just too much bad behaviour I am afraid and low expectations by the children of themselves.
    b. Large, unruly middle-set classes.
    c. Lack of school sport
    d. Low staff morale.
    e. Cover supervisors used instead of qualified teachers
    f. Inclusion policies for violent pupils.
    g. Academic results

  33. @Rob Sheffield – “So I imagine (?) this “wealthy land tax” proposal will more than pay for itself and raise more revenue for George than the 50p band…

    A very interesting develplemnt tonight and one to watch.”

    I think it will be. Osborne’s problem is that he is talking of scrapping the 50p rate with the excuse that it doesn’t raise much money, so if someone comes up with a tax idea that will raise money, he’s stuffed. To be fair to Osborne, he did say he would have to find other ways to tax people if he did drop the 50p rate, but I don’t really think his heart’s in it.

    I’m still waiting for the big revolt over planning law reform. It was rather buried by the riots last week and having watched some of the coverage of the events and subsequent arrests, I have satisfied myself that the rioters were not, generally speaking, members of the National Trust raging in anger about the potential loss of greenbelt land.

  34. @Alec

    “I’m still waiting for the big revolt over planning law reform. It was rather buried by the riots last week and having watched some of the coverage of the events and subsequent arrests, I have satisfied myself that the rioters were not, generally speaking, members of the National Trust raging in anger about the potential loss of greenbelt land.”

    I can’t do one of those slightly irritating smiley face things, so I’d better confine myself to the text-speak abbreviation of “lol”! This is shorthand for “I found your comment very amusing”!

    And there was me thinking that the looters were protesting about shops not being open at hours more compatible with their particular daily routines.

  35. chrislane1945

    (When you come back after watching the footie – Jeez, and you complain of bad behaviour among the kids!!! :-) )

    “i. The new curriculum should foster pride in the national story”

    Why?

    “ii. In terms of state schools.
    a. Just too much bad behaviour I am afraid and low expectations by the children of themselves.
    b. Large, unruly middle-set classes.
    c. Lack of school sport
    d. Low staff morale.
    e. Cover supervisors used instead of qualified teachers
    f. Inclusion policies for violent pupils.
    g. Academic results”

    a. Both bad behavior and low expectations are strongly associated with parental support, which is strongly correlated with mother’s level of education. Basically you are saying that state schools take all pupils while private schools filter out those who aren’t “nice”. We felt it an advantage for our kids to see the full range of the community they were part of, because we had instilled the relevant values in them. You may have been less confident of your parenting, so fair enough.

    b. “Large, unruly middle-set classes.” Sounds as if your school is fairly crap at class construction.

    c. You are too mean/lazy to provide sporting experiences for your kids, and want someone else to do it for you? Jeez!

    d. Is the low staff morale due to the Coalition attack on your pension arrangements?

    e. England doesn’t use qualified teachers for absence cover? Jeez! No wonder you think your system is crap!

    f. Inclusion is a difficult policy. For a number of kids who are relatively low level disruptives, I’m in favour of inclusion. For the habitually violent offenders, inclusion damages other kids. Hence why, in Scotland, such extreme cases are often referred to specialist agencies. Its expensive, but probably cost saving in the longer term.

    g. If you don’t understand the causal relationship between family background and academic attainment, then you are the sort of teacher i would have eased out of my school.

  36. Is Bratton a neoCon? His parroting of their creative destruction mantra in toaday’s Guardian suggests he is… but perhaps he is just repeating what he considers to be a truism:

    “Out of crisis comes opportunities. If you want to speed up the process of change, nothing does it better than a good old crisis.”

    “He added that US police chiefs would be fired if they spoke out against politicians in the same way as Britain’s top police officers have done.”

    And apparently he has said he is prepared to take British citizenship if it meant he could get the Met job.

    h
    ttp://www.guardian.co.uk/uk/2011/aug/14/bill-bratton-police-crisis-cuts

  37. Billy Bob

    “apparently he has said he is prepared to take British citizenship if it meant he could get the Met job.”

    What’s the problem? The UK/Daily Mail bent all the rules to ensure that Zola Budd was a Brit for a couple of years.

  38. Old Nat
    Thanks for the robust reply.
    Yes I understand very well the link between family and academic background.

    Mean and lazy a bit harsh I think. It is just that the experience of school team sport and leagues etc was so valuable, not really available anymore on saturdays in the state schools.

    The academic/family link in terms of results is arguable. It is amazing what a school can do with varying family backgrounds.

    It is very interesting to see the schools where ‘lefties’ to use a phrase used here send their children. Nick, Tony, Diane, Harriet for example have tried to ensure the best possible start for the children.

    in London a huge % of parents have ‘opted out’ of state sec.schools. They are just not good enough.

    So we did provide the rugby and the cricket with school chums

    Not lazy- I travelled all over the country, and not mean: schools are costly.

    I think morale is low primarily due to awful behaviour colleagues must endure, words beginning with….

    In terms of investment, the average state school Head has about £5K to spend per pupil.
    Our children’s schools cost £1800 a month. We have 4 of them,

    As Nye said: ‘Nothing is too good for the working class’

    As to my own time in teaching (since 1979) I have done my best, made some mistakes, by going off topics sometimes, and losing my temper when I was a young teacher. I am still inspired by More’s words to Richard Rich about why be a teacher- in UTOPIA also I think

  39. I thought the advert said you could only apply if you were a British citizen. He is not one and therefore can’t apply let alone have the job. Can a PM give British citizenship to whoever he likes?

  40. @Old Nat – Perhaps Bratton will go on patrol barefoot… Budd’s grandad was a Brit, would Bratton need a similar connection?.

  41. Roger M

    Anthony’s “intentionally homeless” misnomer is conclusively and in detail dealt with (amongst several places) here:

    http://www.yourrights.org.uk/yourrights/rights-of-gypsies-and-travellers/homelessness/index.shtml
    (includes the relevant case law)

    As said- IMHO this “policy” is going nowhere.

    At most it will mean that families get (symbolically) evicted only to be ASAP rehoused elsewhere within the said LA boundaries. Just as has been the case with Labour’s nuisance neighbour policy.

    Monty Python or what.

  42. @ Billy Bob

    And apparently he has said he is prepared to take British citizenship if it meant he could get the Met job.
    ———————————————–
    This will really put the cat amongst the pigeons.
    8-)

  43. chrislane1945

    “robust reply” :-) True. That’s because I simply don’t recognise much of what you say within my experience in state schols – and most of that has been within deprived areas, like the authority I live, worked, and sent my kids to scools in.

    To pick one of your comments, for example –

    “The academic/family link in terms of results is arguable. It is amazing what a school can do with varying family backgrounds.”

    Actually the link isn’t arguable – unless you are blinded by ideology. It is totally established in all the literature.

    At the same time, it is true that schools can make a difference. That’s why Scottish schools aren’t compared with all other schools, but with schools with a similar demographic intake. That way we can determine which schools are being “successful” with the pupils that they have, and can praise some schools serving deprived areas as being outstanding, while identifying some schools serving affluent areas as underperforming.

    England still seems to be locked into a Thatcherite labelling of schools as good or failing based on an arbitrary set of performance statistics.

    I may be wrong, but wasn’t it you who previously described attaining 5 GCSEs at A-C as “basic standards”? That would be level 2 in your National Qualifications Framework (equivalent to Level 4 in ours, which also incorporates levels to SEN levels).

    Your Level 2 is defined as “the ability to gain a good knowledge and understanding of a subject area of work or study, and to perform varied tasks with some guidance or supervision.” – You think that is “basic”????

  44. Billy Bob

    “Perhaps Bratton will go on patrol barefoot” :-) Hopefully there isn’t any broken glass!

  45. Interesting discussion about the police. How very different the tone is from a few weeks ago!

    To answer the one specific question I was asked – Yes, all police officers currently start “at the bottom” and work their way up to the top. I hope it stays that way, despite some agitation for a miltary style “officer class” with recruitment of graduates to mid-ranking positions. Having said that, the convoluted rank structure means that starting at the bottom leads to a veritable sprint race for the top amongst amibitious officers, and many don’t seem to have much time for actually mastering their craft on the way up.

    I don’t for a second believe that Bratton will be Met Commissioner, or even that consideration of the idea got past coffee table chat, but my understanding is that the US operates the same system as the UK and that Bratton will have started as a bottom rank Police Officer or Sheriff’s Deputy (can’t be bothered to Google it).

    As for the spat between Cameron and the police over “who got tough”, no doubt further light will be shed on this in due course (there will have been a lot of emails shooting around the country). I expect there will be some material evidence somewhere for Cameron’s claim that police officers “admitted” to him that they had got their tactics wrong at the start, but there does also seem to be some genuine resentment from senior officers about Cameron’s posture on this.

    I can’t really comment too much, given that I have no background in public order policing beyond the very basic two day training with shields that all new constables get, and that I was out of the country when it all happened.

    The only points I’d make are these;

    a) Although operational policing matters are in the hands of police chiefs, they are quite severely constrained by budgetary factors. It may well transpire that the decision to cancel all leave, request massive mutual aid from rural forces and to flood the streets with uniforms was only taken once assurances were given by ministers that forces would get some or all of the money back. So in that sense the truth may be somewhere in the middle. Police chiefs may have held back on signing the blank cheques until the ministers were back at their desks and were willing to guarantee them.

    b) Orde’s comment about not taking advice on gangs from an area that has 400 of them was pretty crass, slightly rude and almost completely illogical. It fits within the totally misguided theme that the police are responsible for what people get up to, rather than what happens to them when they get up to it. Most police officers are very resistant to this way of thinking. The most common rebuttal is the good old “you don’t blame the Fire Brigade when there’s a fire, why blame the police when there’s a crime?”. Frankly if I want advice on tackling gangs, I’d go to the place with the most. At the very least they’d be able to give you chapter and verse on what doesn’t work. I probably wouldn’t go to Dyfed and Powys…

    c) I agree wholeheartedly with the criticism of the “evict the rioters” agenda, which is completely stupid and utterly inconsistent with normal policy. The only circumstances under which eviction is an appropriate punishment is where the crimes of the tenant or those he/she is responsible for have a direct negative impact on their immediate neighbours. And even then, what happens is rehousing them into different social housing. There just isn’t any way to make this work, just the same as the “take benefits away from the rioters” e-petition is complete cobblers (as so many are).

  46. Neil A

    Would you kindly stop making sensible posts? I’m conditioned to opposing what you say, but since your return you are wholly sensible! :-)

  47. @Neil A

    “Frankly if I want advice on tackling gangs, I’d go to the place with the most.”

    Even then, it rather depends on what your objectives are. If we’re attempting to eliminate gang culture, nothing the US can tell us can help (except, as you say, what not to do). If we’re simply seeking to contain gangs in ghettoes, sacrificing the others who live in those areas to lives of hell, but preventing it spilling out into well-off Tory-voting areas, then perhaps the US has something to offer. Some of that might conceviably be of use as a short term sticking plaster.

    Personally, I’m more interested in understanding why gang culture is attractive to some individuals in the poorer parts of the country, and what can be done to stop that being true. I rather suspect that the place to look is Northern Ireland, which Orme is well-qualified to discuss. NI isn’t yet a perfect place to live, but the blight on communitiies imposed by gangs (aka paramilitaries) has been greatly reduced. That has happened in large part because the grievances that encouraged the gang culture have been addressed.

    We’re never going to stop those wiith an intrinsic tendency towards criminal behaviour. But we can stop those on the margins from being sucked in.

  48. Robin

    “We’re never going to stop those wiith an intrinsic tendency towards criminal behaviour. But we can stop those on the margins from being sucked in.”

    But that’s exactly what Strathclyde Police have concentrated on (and sucking those on the margins back out). It’s not a matter of unthinkingly adopting the exact systems from another jurisdiction, but examining key aspects that can be adapted to the local circumstance.

    If England postures that they have nothing to learn from others, then they are doomed to repitition.

  49. @OldNat

    I wouldn’t argue that in the short term police action can contain a particular problem. But a long-term solution can have nothing to do with policing. I somehow doubt the police are giving those on the margins jobs, prospects, hope…

  50. Robin

    “I somehow doubt the police are giving those on the margins jobs, prospects, hope…”

    I disagree. Obviously, the police can’t directly change the economic circumstances for a community, but they (as part of a co-ordinated approach) can create the conditions in which marginality can be reduced. That should be easier in England than in Scotland. You have one Government dealing with all aspects of public provision. In Scotland, we have to work within a system where the UK prescribes policies in reserved powers which are not necessarily connected with what Scotland wants to do to deal with these problems.

    England should have fewer problems than we have, not more.

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