Education chief is taking the Michael

February 4, 2014 in Comment

© Bill Stott @

© Bill Stott @

Opinion: As regular readers will know, Michael Gove gets up Bill Stott’s nose

Hmm, he’s at it again, that Gove fellow. Wants to bring back writing lines, detention and – who knows? – six of the best, in the search for his notion of discipline in the classroom. He really hasn’t got a clue, has he?

What on earth have the wrong-headed, ignorant aspirations of this Mr Bean look-alike got to do with cartooning? Well, as I noted some time ago, one of the first things he did as Secretary of State for Education was to demote art and design and take it OUT of the core curriculum and put it IN to the hobby fringe.

And despite what Brian Sewell thinks, there IS a link between art education and cartooning.

Of course, a lot depends on the quality of the art education on offer. Given that Mr Beangove has already meddled with curriculum content and syllabuses – e.g. lots more Monarchs’ dates and burnt cakes in history – it wouldn’t surprise me at all if he didn’t make the teaching of perspective and Ostwald Colour Theory compulsory in any art and design still remaining in any school’s curriculum.

Shading would become compulsory, as would dividing up the human body into seven segments. And back would sweep still lifes: brown bananas, leathery oranges and putrefying apples. When colouring-in, pupils would have to keep to the lines.

If Michael Gove ever had an opinion about cartoons, they’d have to be clean, crisp and completely devoid of personality – rather like the anodyne niceness presently available as apps.

Thanks to Bill. To see work from people who paid attention in art class, and strictly no anodyne niceness, visit the portfolios

3 responses to Education chief is taking the Michael

  1. Spot on, wise words and love the cartoon.

    Friend Gove also wishes to see the state sector take on the Common Entrance exam. I’ve just checked and it is as I thought: ‘all candidates take English, Mathematics and Science…(and) at 13-plus may offer any of the following: French, Geography, German, Greek, History, Latin, Mandarin Chinese, Religious Studies and Spanish.’ No mention of Art, I see. Tying a Bow Tie, Managing a Hedge Fund and Toasting Fags over the Prefects’ Fire are optional extras.

  2. Yes. Like someone wrote this week, it’s hard to know if Gove is being serious. 

  3. He is, he IS ! He believes himself to be right, egged on no doubt by the small army of people who haven’t a clue about how to teach and manage kids in schools – the “it never did me any harm” brigade.

    I really wouldn’t be surprised if, as rewards for good behaviour, Mr Govebean didn’t offer midnight feasts in the dorm.

Leave a reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *