Hair-splitting semantics run amok:
By ROBIN PERRIE
THE head of a new school has banned the word “school” – in case it upsets pupils’ parents.
Watercliffe Meadow is known as a “Place for Learning” because staff say “school” has a negative impact on some mums and dads.
The new £4.7million academy in Sheffield, South Yorks, replaced three old schools.
Its 481 pupils, from nursery to Year 6, are allowed to wear slippers instead of shoes.
Headteacher Linda Kingdon said: “We decided we didn’t want to use the word ‘school’.
“One reason was many parents of children here had very negative connotations of school.
“Instead we want this to be a place for family learning.
“There are no bells or locked doors. We wanted to de-institutionalise the place and bring the school closer to real life.”
What negative connotation does the word “school” have exactly? Where did Ms. Kingdon get the idea? Did the parents demand the change? If not, how did anyone draw this conclusion?
I love the quotes about letting the children wear slippers and not having any locked doors, especially since these things are a part of “bringing the school closer to real life.”
Where, in the real world, is anyone allowed to wear slippers outside of their home? Where in the real world do we not have locked doors? This reminds me of some of the things that my friends at state schools used to say to me about attending a Christian college, such as “How do you learn anything about the real world?” Apparently, this was the real world where Mom and Dad paid for everything, you got to sleep in every day until 10, and nobody cared about your appearance when you went to work.
But hey, I’ll play along. I don’t know if England’s public schools are in the same sorry shape as ours, but based on the work stories some of my teacher friends tell me, maybe the U.S. should try some alternative names for our schools:
Gang Recruitment and Initiation Center
Facility for the Cultivation of Unwarranted Self-Esteem
Parental Failure to Discipline Correctional Unit
Place for Junior-League Responsibility Aversion Training and Sociopathy Development
Metal Detector Testing Site
Well, you get the picture. Any other alternatives you care to suggest?
Filed under: Rants, School, alternative names, banned words, education, euphenisms, political correctness, public schools, semantics, Watercliffe Meadow