A TOP Scots headmaster has hit out at teachers for their ‘That’s no ma job’ attitude.
Iain White, principal of a vocational college set up by one of Scotland’s richest men, claims teachers no longer go the extra mile to help teens who have been turned off by education.
Mr White also condemned a clock-watching culture in schools across the country, saying that employees don’t do the extra work needed to ensure their pupils succeed.
And he claims his school – Newland Junior College, Glasgow – performs better than any other in Scotland because folk “just do what needs to be done”.
Mr White’s outspoken remarks were made at the college’s graduation ceremony in Hampden Park.
During his speech at the ceremony in Hampden Park, he claimed that among the phrases resounding in Scottish schools are “That’s no ma job” and “My contract says that I’ve clocked the number of minutes this week that I can be made to teach”.
He added: “These sort of things are never said [in NJC] because folk just do what needs to be done.”
The college, which opened in November 2014, was the brainchild of businessman Jim McColl, who felt that around one in five young people were not suited for mainstream schools.
During the ceremony last week, 19 teenagers became the first graduates of the college, which takes S3 pupils from schools where they have been struggling and guarantees an apprenticeship or place in further education after two years.
So far, all students have gained at least a basic national qualification in five core areas – English, IT, maths, physics and laboratory science skills.
Mr White said that this “100%” success rate meant “we’re the best performers in Scotland”.
He also highlighted an 88% attendance rate and three students who outstripped expectations by taking Higher English.
He said: “We’ve been able to do it because at last somebody in Scotland recognised that it was not appropriate to have every secondary school in the country looking the same and doing the same sort of thing.
“Secondary schools work great for the majority, but for some they don’t, and we have proved that by changing the approach.”
Despite the fact that Newlands seems to be producing results, it is unpopular with Scotland’s largest teaching union.
The Educational Institute of Scotland (EIS) have said that the type of provision it offers should be within the local authority, not outside it.
General secretary Larry Flanagan said: “There is a very limited pot of money to be spent on education. If state funding is allocated to projects such as Newlands, this could have a significant knock-on impact on the resources available in state schools.”
Newlands was kick-started in 2014 with £500,000 funding from Glasgow City Council, £500,000 from the Scottish government and more from private contributors.
Current annual running costs are around £800,000, or around £13,000 for each of its 60 students – more than twice that for a pupil at a local state secondary.