Charles Moore relates the sorry tale of how education inspectors Ofsted have been unduly severe on Ampleforth, the famous Catholic boarding schools with a sad history of child sexual abuse, but which has made great progress in improving the safety of pupils; despite this, after Ofsted swooped on the school with only 20 minutes’ notice for an ‘emergency inspection’, the Department for Education ‘ambushed’ the school ‘with a letter (“Dear Sir or Madam”) to the school authorities’, conveying the decision of the Secretary of State, Gavin Williamson, that from December 29 this year they must not
Eleanor Fazan says that although predictions were made about the Coronavirus pandemic leading to a baby boom, for older women like her, it has meant the very opposite: ‘Far from being at home with nothing to do but procreate, for the rising numbers choosing late motherhood 2020 is presenting challenges’; indeed, ‘[t]he anti-pregnancy pandemic’ has ‘stopped women like me from having babies’. Having wrestled with the problem of lacking a partner, she finally decides to ‘go it alone, if I had to. Surely that’s 100 times better than doing it with the wrong person?
The NHS has announced that ‘[c]hildren with gender dysphoria will now need a court order before they are legally allowed to take puberty blockers’, following ‘a landmark High Court ruling in which judges said trans children should not have the controversial drugs unless they understood the “long-term risks” and “consequences”'; amid ‘warnings it was “highly unlikely” that most teenagers could consent to this process’. the ruling was issued in response to a legal challenge from 23-year-old Keira Bell, ‘who began taking puberty blockers before later “de-transitioning”’.
Charles Moore notes that in March this year, Cambridge University ‘came up with a policy to defend free speech’, with a statement from the university’s council saying that ‘[s]taff, students and visitors should have free speech’ as ‘long as they are “respectful” of differing opinions and of “the diverse identity of others”’; this, he says, ‘sounds reasonable’, but in the wake of the ‘current dismissal case at Eton, in which a master put on YouTube his talk to boys on the subject of masculinity’, it is clear that ‘it tak
Apparently, ‘Switzerland is emerging as a model for how the coronavirus can be contained without a national lockdown, after daily infections halved since the start of November despite pubs, restaurants, gyms and sports facilities remaining open in much of the country.’ Last week, the declining figures were ‘hailed as a triumph for the “Swiss special way” by government doctors’, and ‘will be seen as evidence that regional tiers can work in the UK.’ Having ‘experienced some of the highest death rates in Europe’ after ‘it refused to follow the UK and other countries into a second lockdown this
Journalist Suzanne Moore says she was ‘“betrayed and bullied for saying that women should not be silenced”’, quitting her long-time job at the Guardian newspaper after writing an article in March this year reiterating ‘her view that women are women; that sex is a biological fact, rather than a construct assigned at birth (unlike gender, which suggests boys and girls should behave in a certain way’.