August 8th, 2012

Unions Blocking School Sports

Along with being berated by a cancer patient for sending Indians into space rather than paying for her treatment, the PM weighed into the school sports debate on LBC this morning. Dave told listeners:

“The problem has been too many schools not wanting to have competitive sport, some teachers not really wanting to join in and play their part, and so if we want to have a great sporting legacy for our children. More competition, more competitiveness, getting rid of the idea of all must win prizes, and you can’t have a competitive sports day.”

A micro-row has brewed with one time shadow Education Secretary Andy Burnham claiming the Tories were to blame for scrapping mandatory sports time. Either way, more sports activity for our children is out of the governments’ hands. Once again the unions are going to choke this off. Official advice given by the NASUWT teaching union in the build up to their autumn strike means that more sport will be impossible. Before strike action even begins, this is what NASUWT have ordered their members to do:

“Members should refuse to attend any meetings and activities outside school session times which are not on the school calendar and which are not within directed time. Members should refuse to agree to timetable changes where no sound educational reasons have been given for the change.

Members should refuse to undertake supervision of pupils during the lunch break.”

Well that’s that then.


  1. 1
    Kebab Time says:

    Winners not allowed.


  2. 2

    Andy Burnham may prefer a good fisting.


  3. 3
    Qt. Hon. Dave Lightweight MP says:

    The boating facilities at some of these comps I gather are shocking.


  4. 4
    Selohesra says:

    Saw a good t-shirt today. It just said “3 rasons to be a teacher …… June, July, August”


  5. 5
    Michael Gove says:

    Fuck Orf !


    • 39
      Tristram Smallbore-ffipps says:

      You are an imposter. Gobby Gove never uses one word where one hundred will do.


    • 59
      Just wondering says:

      Are you the Michael Gove who has approved 21 of the 22 applications you have received to sell off playing fields to developers, despite condemning the practice in opposition?


      • 123
        I'll have some of that says:

        Try reading the link about Gove rebutting the smears (Seen Elsewhere, top right of page) instead of mindlessly regurgitating the garbage you feast on from the Grauniad. Twat.


      • 169
        Mike says:

        The reason so many school playing fields are sold off is because so many of the teaching professions and members of the LEAs are aginst competitive sport.
        When many grammar schools became comprehensives , many of the teachers who had played sport at university and who coached the school teams left, either to public schools or remaining grammar schools. If one looks at the bastions of left wing thought ,LSE, Sussex, Goldsmiths etc, etc, very few have good sports teams. Very few left middle class people ever enjoyed sports at school and/or university and have allowed their disdain for such activities to influence education policy.


  6. 6
    tommy5d says:

    The Union guidelines are fair enough if you look at how some schools treat their teachers… I have no idea why primary schools hire dinner-ladies but secondaries don’t.


  7. 7
    Whippersnapper2 says:

    Dave, wind up ALL teacher’s unions ban them forever – they are all useless and reactionary and always have been. Get a grip mate….


  8. 8
    The stench of corruption says:

    With regards to this and the previous thread:

    It’s time we accepted that this so-called democracy lark is just that. It doesn’t matter that much whether it’s a Labour or a Tory government we have. Apart from some surface differences, they both pour billions down the EU drain, the foreign aid drain, and that’s because that’s what the political establishment has deemed to be the status quo they prefer.

    This isn’t a tinfoil claim, it’s got nothing to do with those absurd “new world order” bollocks that conspiracy theorists are obsessed with, especially as they’re fixated on the notion it’s all secret and covert. That’s the whole point: there’s nothing mysterious about it, it’s in plain sight for all to see. We’re treated like shills of the state, made to believe that, for example, Cameron is different from Miliband, or Blair is different from Major. Cameron or Major would have taken us into Iraq just as Blair did and just as Brown and Miliband would have had they been in that position. These cocks are just figureheads, bound by what a whole load of vested interests want – namely, our money.

    UKIP will never form the government. It’s too small and everything is set against them. You just have to accept the sad fact that whoever resides in Downing St, the gravy train to Europe and the steady chute of cash to despotic nuclear states will carry on.


  9. 10
    mark serwotka says:

    Oh goodie another strike i can join in with


  10. 11
    lolathebeautiful says:

    Sack the fuckers


    • 40
      Tristram Smallbore-ffipps says:

      Absolutely; the sooner someone sacks Gobby Gove the better.


      • 64
        Four-eyed English Genius says:

        I think you have the wrong end of the stick. She means union indoctrinated teachers!


        • 94
          Tristram Smallbore-ffipps says:

          Are you a member of the French cycling team by any chance? British humour seems a bit lost on you.


          • Izzy or Izn't he says:

            And that was ‘British humour’ was it?

            Fucking hell. Standards must be slipping.


          • Tristram Smallbore-ffipps says:

            Obviously you are from the middle east judging by your name – so you will not grasp the concept of humour at all. Strange how rapidly foreigners master English vernacular.


          • Four-eyed English Genius says:

            Not really that funny. Don’t give up the day job!


          • Teechin profeshunal says:

            Tris, are you one of us?


  11. 12
    ed martin says:

    are schools much use for anything beyond drone manufacture?


  12. 13

    It is very hot here today.

    The temperature is in Centigrade.

    (Won’t give any numbers in case I get told to wear that hat again.)




  13. 15
    Camilla Parker-Starney says:

    It’s not even a question of having sports and not having it. A rigorous private school will play rugby, football, cricket and offer a host of other sports whilst a weak state school will offer a sack race where everyone gets a prize.


    • 20
      Moussa Koussa says:


      rugby, football, cricket . 3 sports that we are currently shite at.


      • 67
        Tardkiller says:

        4th in the world

        3rd in the world (how i don’t know)

        1st in the world.

        you talk shit


        • 160
          JH says:

          Moussaf Socialism wants us to be shit at those sports, desperately.

          Gramsciian lefties find it harder to crack countries that are competent and proud, hence the insessant attempts to have people believe that *everything* apart from a yet-bigger state and left-wing vanity projects are of no value.


      • 71
        Four-eyed English Genius says:

        Only football, methinks, Moussaka, me old china!


    • 35
      SP4BS says:

      Dave says “The problem has been too many schools not wanting to have competitive sport”

      Has he counted them? I perhaps went to school in a different time and in a seemingly different country.

      I feel contractually obliged to say “sacks? Prizes? Luxury!”


    • 47
      Tristram Smallbore-ffipps says:

      I would have no problem playing cricket on the fields of Eton, where a fortune has been spent to prepare a safe wicket. Suggesting any school can prepare a safe wicket without money is like suggesting Gobby Gove can pass a journalist without pontificating.


  14. 17
    Moussa Koussa says:

    Clutching at Straws now.

    Unions are to blame for no PE…. I’m finally lost for words.

    The Blair and Brown years seem to have produced a hell of a lot of successful sports people.

    Ennis – 11 in 1997
    Farah – 13 in 1997
    Daley – 3 in 1997
    Every single gold medal rower – school age in 1997
    Most gold cycling medals – school age in 1997

    …what am I on about, 99% of our medallists were all school age ( between 5 -13 ) in 1997.


    • 42

      …demonstrating that their pathway was formed before New Labour came to power.

      You don’t decide in your mid-teens to suddenly become a great athlete.

      Back to school again, Moose.


    • 49
      Tristram Smallbore-ffipps says:

      I am all in favour of clutching at Straws, as long as the clutching is done with a pair of red hot pincers.


    • 53
      Daniel says:

      So Labour are responsible for Tom Daley because he was three years old in 1997?!

      Well Jessica Ennis was three years old in 1989. And Chris Hoy is 36 so we can thank Thatcher for him, then? And the girl who won two gold medals yesterday in the cycling is still in her teens.

      But you’re right – it’s all down to Tony and Gordon.


    • 60
      SouthEastVoter says:

      How many went to Private School?


    • 90
      Izzy or Izn't he says:

      It’s an odd hobby you have Moussa.

      Posting stuff that make you look like a total c unt and seemingly having an insatiabile appetite for doing it.

      If you are going to troll you might try to do it with some wit and style.


  15. 18
    Raving Loon says:

    Of course the unions block it. The main purpose of teaching unions is to make Teachers’ lives as cushy as possible, regardless of the impact to children. Teaching unions are universally anti education (except the socialist re-education type of education!)


  16. 19
    Piers Morgan says:

    Damn,I forgot the words to our National Anthem.

    Can anyone help please ?


  17. 21
    Billy Pilgrim says:

    Speaking as one who withstood endless Wednesday and Friday afternoons on cold wet football and rugby pitches, thank God they sold them off!


  18. 22

    I know this sounds self serving, in more senses than one, but I will shout it anyway:


    *** I support Pussy Riot ***



  19. 25
    Bugler Bert says:

    The best thing to do is nothing; for when the 2016. 2020 & 2024 Games come, the teenagers and young adults [ex state schools] realize who has robbed them of the chance to compete, they may taken action against the slimy, left-wing layabout members of the NUT and the NAS/UWT – lynches perhaps?


  20. 26
    Jimmy says:

    Why are the TUC and Unison logos on this story?


  21. 27
    Chief Cashier says:

    And you wonder why people strive to send their children to private schools. Teachers in private schools are better paid, better teachers and put more hours in above the school hours.
    PS Are the unions still run by communists?


    • 52
      AC1 says:

      Also the other paying parents care about their child’s education, so they won’t have thier children stuck in school with the disruptive underclass mongs of parents who send them there solely “coz it getz zem out ov ma heeh”.


    • 58
      mark serwotka says:

      We don’t like the term communist we are progressive thinking wealth redistribution experts


      • 98
        Lord Cashbox of DeSleaze says:

        m a non-progressive wealth redistribution expert. Isn’t that right Don Carlos?


  22. 28
    I don't need no doctor says:

    Teachers don’t want to teach, police don’t want to police, nurses don’t want to nurse. All we have are form fillers.
    Dumbed down lazy fucking twats.


  23. 29
    Moussa Koussa says:

    What is your twat leader on about

    We have had our most successful games ever.

    All our competitors went to school, did PE, competed at sports days. All would site that school introduced them to their sport

    What exactly is cockboy on about


    • 31
    • 66
      The General Public says:

      Our TeamGB competitors were all in athletics clubs outside school, staffed by people committed to excellence.

      No teaching trade unionist has ever brought anyone or anything to world-beating standard – if you don’t count throwing sickies and whingeing, obviously.


    • 73
      Duty spelling pedant says:



    • 82 says:

      Weren’t the left wingers whinging that most of these medal winners went to private schools? You seem to want it both ways.


    • 85
      Backwoodsman says:

      Just so no one is under the misapprehension that you are making a sensible post, he is probably responding to the bleating about most of the home grown competitors having not attended state sector schools.
      He is making a valid point that the lazy unionised fuckers who teach in these schools, but who don’t believe its part of their job to enforce standards of discipline, or encourage the sporting endevours of their pupils, should take a long hard look in the mirror.


    • 87
      Four-eyed English Genius says:

      “All would site that school introduced them to their sport”

      But mainly those that went to private school!


  24. 33
    I don't need no doctor says:

    A directive from 6 figure salaried union leaders. Left wing agenda comes before the kids, only the teachers and some parents are too stupid to see it. Mind you most teachers are lazy chip on the shoulder arsewipes.


    • 45
      beast says:

      at my school you were punished if you refused a run on a wet cold winters day by pulling a sickie
      thanks for paying for that mummy


    • 63
      Tristram Smallbore-ffipps says:

      Well, you know the old saying; if you can,do; if you can’t, teach; if you can’t even teach look into your family tree to find out how closely related you are to Gobby Gove.


  25. 57
    Anonymous says:

    When did Andy Burnham become Shadow Education Secretary?


  26. 62
    Tomorrow's Chip Wrapper says:

    I would also suggest that old bugbear Health & Safety and the fact that you have to complete a risk assessment in triplicate if you supervise sports and especially if you do so(voluntarily) outside normal school hours i.e. weekends or if you are visiting another school on an away fixture has a lot to do with it as well


  27. 68
    pilsdon says:

    Burnham is health Twigg is education


    • 83
      Tristram Smallbore-ffipps says:

      Is it true that Baldrick Burnham has spent the NHS budget on a huge turnip?


      • 120
        pilsdon says:

        no he used a magic money tree grown in a bill and ben flowerpot using the ppi ed
        piper to help


  28. 72
    Vladimir Putin says:

    Pussy Riot are innocent !


  29. 74
    Jess The Dog says:

    So how will scrapping PE help?


  30. 81
    Hawrh109 says:

    And what do you lot actually do? Because you seem to have a hell of a lot of time to post on here. Not every teacher is left wing or even a member of the unions. Not every teacher is crap. Not every teacher goes home at 3pm. Not every teacher doesn’t take part in after school activities. As a teacher I accept that there are bad teachers among us. But to try and compare private and stare education really is a non starter. Look at the amount of money per pupil an independent school gets. Look at the level of support from many of the parents. Look at the policies state teachers have to work with – inclusion and behaviour for a start. Try supporting those teachers that do believe in a disciplined, competitive and academic school system but at the same time understand that we can only work with what we are given. And also try looking at the MP’s working calendar before berating our holidays.


    • 88
      Tristram Smallbore-ffipps says:

      You haven’t quite grasped this site, have you. The posters fall into 3 groups; the retired (inc. me); the unemployed, unemployable and retarded (most) and the idiot sons of Lords and MPs who are paid by their daddies to infest blogs. You can guess the level of content this tends to deliver.


    • 89 says:

      Look at the lack of motivation children face in state schools. That doesn’t cost money. It is a matter of attitude and ideology.


    • 97 says:

      MPs calendar? Quite! Another rancid part of the public sector that thinks they are superior to everybody else.


    • 147
      Out with the violin says:

      Have some cheese with that whine

      And you know full well you get a lot more holiday than lesser paid and harder workers

      You blame the MPs just like you blame victims of bullying


    • 159
      Hang on a minute says:

      What,exacty do your terms and condiitons have to do with who posts what and when? Why do you think those of us who were taught to think critically at school believe the ramblings of the gibbering classes,or agree with Guido? Just because some of us do not comment on everything does not imply agreement.

      You may feel insulted by some comments but your own are equally insulting. Like much of the country you are presenting your assumptions as fact. Stop.


      • 168
        Hawrh109 says:

        That’s right; my comments were aimed at every single one of you. You’re so right and I am so wrong, I bow down to your infinite wisdom. Please accept my apologies and I will work 365 days next year xxx


  31. 91
    Brown out now and pay me damages. says:

    So many fat kids.


  32. 92
    Mornington Crescent says:

    O/T but you’ve got to love the smart-arse Tittygraph readers attacking Google for paying for their new premises from “untaxed profits”:

    Poor dears, blissfully unaware that the moral of their accusations is:
    1. Slash taxes for businesses and individuals – and the wasteful public spending that is funded by it
    2. Leave more money in people’s/businesses’ pockets to inject into the economy.

    Just how fucking difficult can it be?


  33. 93
    Teachers Hubby says:

    Unions suggesting members don’t work free at lunchtime, in the evenings or at weekends no wonder the economy is in a mess why stop at teachers force all workers to work compulsory unpaid overtime


  34. 96
    Socialist Workers Party says:

    Competition is wrong. Everyone’s a winner.


  35. 113
    Made in Belfast says:

    School PE has been a joke for so long! You can’t say, “It’s not winning, it’s the taking part that counts!” if no beggar wins!

    Kids are so coddled that everyone is special (even Disney mocked that in “The Incredibles”) that they can’t accept that they can’t do something! (See X Factor early rounds).

    Who does Dave blame for the fact that every patch of playing field out there is at risk of being sold by desperate councils for housing?


  36. 121
    Anonymous says:

    “Being sold by desperate councils for housing…”

    Why exactly are they “desperate” ? Short of money for community outreach counsellors and climate change awareness officers ?

    And why more “housing” ? Something to do with mass uncontrolled Third World immigration, perchance ?


    • 156
      Simple innit says:

      If you don’t build the houses these wanderers will have to go somewhere else, won’t they? Then the councils would not be so desperate. Maybe some of the “visitors” may even wander off back where they came from in the first place.


    • 164
      Johannes Brahmins says:

      We want to be close to a school with good sports facilities.


      Oh …..


  37. 124
    Jock says:

    fair enough then. But, as a quid pro quo, perhaps we should have back the 5 days we lose to staff training, meaning that, in my kids school, rather than 195 days education a year, they only get 190 days. Can we have another look at that then?


    • 143
      South of the M4 says:

      One half day per week away from the classroom for ‘ lesson planning’ morphed into one day off per fortnight for ‘ lesson planning ‘ – which morphed into one day off each fortnight to go shopping or sleep in etc. Many great teachers exist – but many more are being trained to be shysters. An unintended consequence?


  38. 127
    Anonymous says:

    Would the defenders of individual freedom like to explain how they justify forcing teachers to volunteer their spare time to run sports clubs?

    If you want sports teachers, employ sports teachers.


    • 141
      Anonymous says:


      Although any other day, Guido would be calling sports coaches at school public sector parasites….


    • 165
      JH says:

      No one is forcing them. The fact that the unions are forbidding them to do so is where the compulsion comes in, as usual they do*not*give*a*shit about the children they are so happy to exploit as some sort of moral force field.

      No point explaining that to you though. A c’unt is a c’unt.


  39. 130
    Andy Coulson's monkey says:

    Guido has quotes NASUWT but used another union’s logo. 0/10. Back of the class!


  40. 135
    Lou Scannon says:

    Members should refuse to undertake supervision of pupils during the lunch break.
    The school is legally responsible for pupils while they’re on school premises, are they not ? So who exactly are the unions expecting to keep an eye on the little monsters during this period ?


    • 140
      South of the M4 says:

      In my daughters school they refused them re-entry into the school building. Thus, they either stayed outside in the rain, or went into the local town. Myself, and other parents, tackled the head about this and there seemed to be no understanding of ‘the legal responsibility’. We were left with the impression that beyond the classroom, the teaching profession (or maybe union) could not give a *uck. Is this modern Britain?


  41. 139
    Anonymous says:

    You better start paying them properly and treating them with a bit of respect if you expect them to give up their free time after school to coach sports.

    Why on earth should they help out when they are treated like crap?


    • 145
      Amounderness Lad says:

      Perhaps we should only pay teachers for the time they spend teaching instead of paying them not to be working during all the long holidays they get. That way they could have four weeks paid holidays per year like most other workers and the rest of the time off they take would then be unpaid.

      Those teachers who care about their pupils and take part in any additional school activities could have that time used to reduce the amount additional unpaid holiday time they get outside of the normal four weeks paid holidays the rest of the population get.


  42. 161
    Anonymous says:

    “The problem has been too many schools not wanting to have competitive sport”

    Tory lie.

    “Once again the unions are going to choke this off.”

    At worst only a temporary strike-related action.

    So effectively a Greedo lie. In other words, a Tory lie.


  43. 166
    Johnny says says:

    “A micro-row has brewed with shadow Education Secretary Andy Burnham claiming the Tories were to blame for scrapping mandatory sports time.”

    What is it with Westminster that they almost all believe the answer to everything is the State? You won’t get people to excel at sport by forcing them to do it.


  44. 167
    DameIreneWard says:

    Gove has done a reasonable job but his first action should have been to move all schools to “free” status within two years of the start of this government. Privatising education and putting choice and power in the hands of parents is an important step in reducing the deadhand of local authorities and unions on education. Good schools would prosper and be able to expand or take over the failing ones. School holidays should be cut and the school day extended by an hour, plus Saturday mornings to allow for sports.


  45. 171
    Putney Dissenter says:

    Congratulation to Conservative Wandsworth Borough Council for agreeing to sell off a large proportion of Elliot School’s playing fields to property developers just as the British Olympic medal total peaks. Great PR. Hopefully when the number of pupils is halved and ARK turns itself into a profit-making body we’ll be able to look forward to the years of Tory dominance with real fondness. No, I don’t think so either.


  46. 172
    keredybretsa says:

    I remember back 60 years a lad running round+round a Sportsfield. Never made the House footie/cricket teams nor represented the School in any sport activity. Usually made the Scraps XI whatawinner. Long before Health+Safety & Human Rights. Now I guess the Sportsfields have been flogged & developed for homes.


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