Can it be any surprise to parents and society that changes in the school curriculum has given rise to a generation of children who have developed an “al about me” mentality?
Dr Carol Craig said children were being over-praised and schools needed to reclaim their role as educators, not psychologists.
Since 2007, there has been a statutory responsibility on schools in England to improve pupils’ well-being and primary and secondary schools are increasingly teaching social and emotional skills.
It is possible that DENI ETI inspectors will soon appraise schools’ performance in this area; and well-being could be one of the measures used in the school report card system that Caitriona Ruane wants to introduce.
Dr Craig told head teachers that this was not the role of schools.
“Schools have to hold out that they are educational establishments,” she said.
“They are not surrogate psychologists or mental health professionals.”
Learning about feelings from a professional in a classroom did not send out a positive message, she added.
And she warned there was a danger the more schools taught emotional well-being, the less parents would take responsibility.
“We run the risk of undermining the family as the principal agent of sociability,” she said.
It seems the message has not reached Ms Ruane’s DENI, in fact the Northern Ireland educationalists could be described as evangelists in this field.
PACE has issued warnings about the pilot of the revised curriculum, the Early Years Enriched Curriculum which was evaluated by none other than the Queen’s University School of Psychology.
What a surprise that their self evaluation promoted the “all about me” mentality. Parents may now be asking – at what cost?