Friday, 6 February 2009

school class size, redundancy payments, titanic boa, NY sniffs out the culprit, rant remix

I was delighted to read Nick Clegg's announcement on education policies, particularly on reducing class size for infant school age children. As a parent I would never dream of looking after twenty to thirty kids of that age on my own, so why would we expect teachers to do so? Reducing class size frees teachers up to teach rather than practise crowd control and gives them the classroom space to explore ways to make education fun and, at that age, a 'doing' thing.

You can read here about how the government is looking into improving redundancy payments. I still think there is an area which must be looked at, which is where workers change their hours to part-time and then belatedly realise they lose their redundancy package, even after many years of full-time service. This particularly affects women but, as companies look for ways to reduce working hours, more people could lose out.

Couple of other stories have caught my eye, one is the titanic boa, thankfully extinct and out in New York they have finally solved the mysterious smell that has occasionally wafted over the city over the last few years. And were you watching Breakfast this morning? Certainly woke me with their unedited clip of Mr. Bale's 'moment'. Ah, well, guess we all are just *@!!#$* human after all.... (If you have a strong constitution and reasonably open mind on strong language, this is a remix of the rant.)

Thursday, 5 February 2009

Reviving old gardens..

I was reading about a 17th century Palladian house for sale up in Scotland, that has been restored inside but the garden hasn't and thinking what a great project that would be when I suddenly remembered that the new design for The Hadspen Parabola garden (Hadspen House)was pretty much meant to be finished this year, but can find no indication of it and wondered what had happened to it. It always seems sad when gardens fall out of use or favour.
I have been glued to the new series of Grand Designs, last night's epic house build was quite an eye-opener, I hope they revisit when the water(less)wheel is in place and the plot landscaped.