Soft in the Head

A reader emails:


The poms have gone all soft in the head after Michael Gove, their education minister, apologised for being an upstart toward his French teacher. Now a whole bunch of journalists have gone soft and written tl;dr sorry notes to their mostly dead teachers. It is reminiscent of “doing lines” as punishment.

I want to apologise to my teachers for not being more willing to express my views on the failings of the education system, and how I had to unlearn most of what I was taught. I am stoked the catch method of teaching writing is getting the arse as I got sent to the HOD of english for complaining about it repeatedly.

I certainly won’t be apologising to any of my useless teachers. One was the head of the PPTA and took great delight in abusing me for my father’s politics. Then there is my maths teacher who only turned up to tell us which page of exercises to complete before heading back to the gym to watch his charges doing weightlifting and wrestling….who is now some sort of teaching guru in mathematics. Or the teacher who had us warm up his car just before 3:15pm so he could leg it to the pub without delay once the bell rang. Or the teacher who decided he would try to crack the Omertà that exists in a class of 7th form blokes by keeping us in class until 5pm one day…no one cracked BTW, except the teacher. And who could forget the teacher who enjoyed caning kids so much and was so effective at it that he was only allowed to cane back-hand.

In my experience teachers were ill-tempered, dim-witted, bullies. It is they who should be apologising for inflicting their ideological misery on countless children.

I got an education despite my teachers not because of them.


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  • Name

    We were told by our principle at assemblies that if we didn’t get uni entry we would be failures – now all of us that left early are fairly well off as farmers, builders plumbers etc.

    My friends who went to uni are either still studying or on the dole – go figure?

  • blazer

    in praise of teachers is that even though known as the 3rd sex,if it were not for them the David Bains of the world and other misfits would never get married or ….laid even.

    • Pissedoffyouth

      For once, blazer, i agree with you.

  • Petal

    “In my experience teachers were ill-tempered, dim-witted, bullies. It is they who should be apologising for inflicting their ideological misery on countless children.”

    Sounds rough. Can’t say it’s my experience. I recognise some of the teachers in your description as archetypes but mine would fit the 80/20 ‘rule’ where the majority were decent people doing a decent job.

    • Perhaps a half decent job…most were jobsworths

  • Teachersrock

    And here we have a perfect example of why Whale’s comments and position on teachers and education in NZ should be ignored.

    Because of his experience in a world that no longer exists he deems all teachers of today as worthless. Perhaps if Whale reeducated himself he may learn a truth or 2.

    • Pissedoffyouth

      He could even get credits for using a chainsaw and defensive driving! so educated.