I am, of course, pleased that Theresa May recognises that increasing numbers of adults and children are suffering from mental health difficulties (May pledges to try to reduce stigma, 9 January). The huge emotional burden this puts on families only increases the risks. These difficulties have escalated in the six years since massive cuts to public services and most preventive mental health services, alongside the increased culture of competition that leads to more anxiety and less security.
Having been part of primary prevention and secondary child and adolescent mental health services in my 30-year career in the NHS, it was soul-destroying to see services closed and specialist skills built up over decades being lost. It is galling to hear the plans presented as if they are new and concerning that one of the plans is for teachers to be trained to identify mental health issues and provide interventions. Often teachers, also struggling with cuts to services and increased pressures, can already recognise mental health issues but lack the time and expertise to offer interventions that could make a significant difference. Identification alone is not helpful unless combined with resources to deal with the issues.Continue reading...
We are glad to add our own statue to those you mention (Tributes to ‘Red’ Ellen and Pankhurst show male domination is no longer set in stone, 9 January). We have been planning and raising funds for two years to create a lasting memorial to Mary Barbour, who led the Glasgow rent strike in 1915 against the greedy landlords pushing rents up in the rundown tenement flats while many men were away fighting in France. That year men in the shipyards and engineering works downed tools in support when 20,000 marched to the sheriff court. By Christmas Day Lloyd George, then munitions minister, pushed a new law through parliament to bring rents back to prewar levels for the duration of the war and six months after.
This new law benefited tenants throughout Britain. Yet Mary Barbour’s name is not mentioned in the histories of red Clydeside. That is why we are having a statue unveiled in a few months’ time, not only to honour Mary Barbour, but to remind people of what so-called ordinary people can achieve. This happened years before the first Labour government came to power. Mary became one of the first female Labour councillors in 1920, then went on to battle for numerous reforms: clean milk free to schoolchildren, provision of public baths and washhouses, play parks, and the first ever family planning clinic.
Chair, Remember Mary Barbour Association
Female students are prepared to change their lifestyles – as long as there’s no pressure. And universities are finding that non-athletes make the best ambassadors
“I’m one of the laziest people I know!” The declaration is followed by laughter, but Lauren Barkas is serious. The 21-year-old chemistry student had no interest in sport, and it took her a long time to decide to go along to one of the University of Hull’s women-only fitness sessions.
“I heard about it and thought it sounded OK, but I didn’t really want to go,” she says. “Then I thought, ‘Come on, give it a try, it’s your first year of uni,’ and I went and loved it straight away.”Continue reading...
The story of the students preferring African or Asian to European philosophy isn’t what it seems. These so-called PC snowflakes just care about learning
We all know what students are like nowadays, don’t we? Special snowflakes who can’t cope with the real world, who refuse to venture out of their safe spaces to learn anything, who are so achingly PC they won’t even let their institutions serve sushi in the cafeteria. When they’re not wasting their lives on social media or fighting for a fairer world for all, these mewling, overprivileged babies like to spend their time policing their academic superiors on their curriculum choices.
The latest scandal? Step forward Soas students’ union, which has outraged basically every outlet in the rightwing press by calling, astonishingly enough, for such great philosophers as Kant, Plato and Descartes to be banned from the curriculum, just because they are white.Continue reading...
A final-year veterinary student at the University of Edinburgh who is part of the new Undergraduate Certificate in Veterinary Medical Education Programme has become an Associate Fellowship of the Higher Education Academy (AFHEA).
While I encourage everyone to be alarmed by Trump, education isn’t the top of my list of worries: for my family, it’s been a problem no matter who’s in charge
About a decade ago, when we were sending our son to a mostly-white public charter school in Los Angeles’ East Side hipness zone, I got a pure sense of what “school choice” is all about. The school had been bouncing around like a dodgeball from location to location. First, it was located at a church on Fairfax, but soon outgrew that facility. Then, it occupied the edge of a rough Hollywood elementary school, where the mostly Mexican public-school population was kept at arm’s length from the Stellas and Elijahs and Dexters of the “charter” that longed for a permanent home.
One night, we had a public meeting at an auditorium in Lincoln Heights, a neighborhood that’s been plagued by gang violence since the era of LA Confidential. Our school’s bourgeois brain trust had come up with the idea of merging its resources with another charter school, which mostly served Central American immigrant families. Proposed as the location for this new merged school: a former sanitarium for unwed mothers, which had gone unoccupied since 1979 and was now certainly occupied by ghosts.Continue reading...