ASHFORD MP Damian Green is to swap the Commons for the classroom by turning teacher for a week at a comprehensive school in south London. Forsaking the green leather benches of the House of Commons, the shadow education secretary is to get a taste of life at the sharp end of schooling.
He is to join hundreds of pupils and staff returning to school this coming week in an attempt to better understand the workload facing teachers.
The MP said: “Politicians who sound off about their subjects should know something real life in those subjects and this seems to be me to be the best way to expose myself to what the every-day life of teachers and students is like.
“It will be a way of seeing what day to day life is like. One of the things that people outside education do find surprising is how much extra work teachers do outside the classroom. This will help me find out about the amount of work spent away from the classroom in terms of organising things like lesson plans.”
The MP has chosen the school, which is in Wandsworth, rather than one in Kent because he felt that he was already familiar with them. “If there are any schools which I can claim to know reasonably well, it is those in my constituency. Although there is no such thing as a typical school, this is about as representative as you can get.”
The MP expects to spend most of his time shadowing teachers but is also anticipating taking the occasional class.