Saturday, 1 March 2008

Larry Norman dies

(Ed: Sorrow and joy mixed together over this news - you have to be 'a certain age' to remember Norman's heyday.)

THE “grandfather of Christian rock music”, Larry Norman, died on Sunday in his home town of Salem, Oregon. He was 60 years old, and had suffered from heart-related bad health for many years. Read more
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Friday, 29 February 2008

Political interference is damaging children's education, report claims

This was the Government that promised its priority would be education, education, education. Instead, as a slew of extraordinary reports are making clear, it will be remembered by schools as the Government that could not leave well alone.

The biggest inquiry into primary education for 40 years concluded yesterday that Labour's tight, centralised control of England's primary schools has had a devastating impact on children's education. Micromanagement, meddling and a succession of ministerial edicts have killed the spontaneity in the nation's classrooms. Teachers have been stripped of their powers of discretion. And the net result of a decade of new Labour "reform" has almost certainly been a decline in the quality of education that the young receive.

It would have been better, concludes the Cambridge University-based Primary Review – an ongoing inquiry into primary education in England – if the Government had done nothing at all.

The four reports published today follow 18 earlier reports that have painted a devastating picture of government interference in primary schools and laid bare ministers' obsession with testing and desire to dictate the minutiae of classroom practice.

They say government influence in the classroom has increased since 1997 to such an extent that English primary schools are now subject to a "state theory of learning" in which teachers are not only told what to teach but how they should teach it. Read more
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Jim Packer threatened with suspension

As evidence of the escalating crisis in the global Anglican Communion, today one of the of the world’s most esteemed Christian theologians, Dr. J.I. Packer, received a letter threatening suspension from ministry by the controversial Bishop of New Westminster, Michael Ingham. Bishop Ingham accused Dr. Packer, hailed by Time Magazine as the “doctrinal Solomon” of Christian thinkers, “to have abandoned the exercise of ministry” after the church where he is a member voted to separate from the diocese and join the Anglican Province of the Southern Cone under the oversight of Anglican Archbishop Gregory Venables. Read more
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Wednesday, 27 February 2008

Adults to blame for feral gangs says Archbishop

THE Archbishop of Can­ter­bury sparked fresh controversy yesterday by suggesting yobs only join gangs to fend off  “un­friendly adults”.

Youths swarm on street corners and in shopping malls so they “feel secure” from older people, claimed Dr Rowan Williams.

He said rather than trying to intimidate innocent people, the young mobs are simply trying to find their own “safe public space”.

The Church of England leader also attacked “indiscriminate, knee-jerk” bids to control rowdy young people by using Mosquito ultrasonic devices, which scare them away with a high-pitched whining sound. Read more
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