My thanks to everyone that helped this blog reach the total of 25,000 views in less than two years and with just over 200 posts. It took just one year eight months and eighteen days to be precise to reach the 25,000 figure if anyone other than me is interested. There has been at least one visitor from each of around 100 different countries during that time, although the bulk of visitors, over 22,000 views, have been from the United Kingdom. Still thank you to my local followers in Kazakhstan, Australia, Thailand, Canada, and across much of Europe as well as the rest of the world. I guess that the power of the State is the reason I am still waiting for my first viewing from the People’s Republic of China and from Tibet. Much of Francophile Africa is another area where there have been no views, but that may be less surprising given the language barrier and internet penetration in the region. My especial thanks to the more than 150 regular followers and to those that re-blog the most interesting posts to others.
Over the course of the last year the issue of teacher supply and the associated issue of training have together come to be a dominant theme in the posts on this blog. In view of the changes to training with the government in England preferring school-based preparation to higher education courses this is probably not a surprise. What started as a continuation of my column about facts and issues behind the numbers has progressed to consider some wider educational issues. No doubt that trend will continue as the UK general election looms ever larger. Indeed, the 2015 general election looks like joining those of 1906; 1945; 1979 and 1997 in the annuls of political history as one when seismic changes takes place at Westminster.
I originally started writing about education statistics in the Times Educational Supplement in 1998 in a column called ‘hot data’. In one form or another that run until 2011 when I retired from the TES. For a period it then ran in the on-line Education Journal, and many those columns can still be accessed on Amazon in the e-book ‘Please Miss- can pigs fly?’ For various reasons I eventually became attracted to the greater freedom that a blog can provide where editorial decisions and what to write are entirely within the compass of the author: hence this blog.
Do I have a favourite post? I am not sure that I do. As I only write what I want to, in one sense every post is a favourite. Certainly the post of early August 2013 on School Direct and teacher training recruitment generated the most consequences at the time. One of the most distressing to have to write was my tribute to Andrew Bridgwater after his untimely death; liberalism and special education lost a great friend that day. My submission to the Carter Review has been one of the most viewed of recent posts.
Most posts aim for around the 500 word mark, but as usual this one is slightly over-length as I am not good with the red pen. So, let me close by once again thanking everyone for reading and for the many comments I have received. The next challenges, 50,000 views and 500 posts.