Daniel Beddow 0

Protecting the Future of Resistant Materials at Reading School

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For those not already in the know, Resistant Materials GCSE is not currently being offered to year 9 students at Reading School, who are in the process of choosing their options. This is part of a plan outlined by Mr Weeds to remove res-mat (workshop technology) as a whole from the school. As confirmed by early responses from the school governors, this is part of a budgeting effort, saving money on the supplies and teaching hours taken by GCSE resmat. This may ultimately lead to the reduction of tech teaching across the school and removal of the workshop, seeing the end of a long line of successful engineers produced by the school technology department for over 100 years. Year after year, our school has many successful applicants to universities for engineering degrees, largely aided by the factor of their practical skills when compared to largely theoretically talented applicants. Including and not limited to Ross Brawn of Brawn GP, who on one previous visit to the school paid great tribute to the school technology department for making him the engineer he is today. A further point of note: The school Art department has less a-level students than technology, year after year, yet has more teachers and so logically is a greater strain on school funding. How can this be so disproportionate yet supposedly justified? (By no means do I think Art should be dropped instead!) A previous attempt at a petition was stopped today by Mr Weeds, infringing on Charlie Knight's right to freedom of assembly and freedom of speech. I am not afraid to put my name to this protest, and openly invite Mr Weeds to meet with me to discuss my opinion if he feels necessary. This petition has also been designed such that any signature may be made anonymous until I release the list, preventing any student from feeling at risk by signing. It also has measures in place to prevent junk or duplicate signatures, but please refrain from fake signing as this reduces the impact of our statement. When I feel an appropriate number of signatures has been reached, I will send the list to Dr Phillip Mitchell (chair of the school governors), who is one of the few people who can prevent Mr Weeds from going through with this. In the meantime, I encourage all students and parents to email Dr Mitchell at govsclerk@reading-school.co.uk expressing their concerns. The only way we will make a change is by showing the overwhelming support for our threatened subject, making the removal of subject choice unreasonable and unjustified. For those of you wondering who I am and why I am writing this petition, I have written this section to explain who I am. This will also allow Mr Weeds to contact me, should he find this petition. My name is Daniel Beddow (the guy always walking around the workshop in bright blue overalls!) and I am an A level technology student in 13AJF (Mr Fermor's form). I have applied to study engineering at university and received 4 successful offers. I wouldn't have followed this career path or got as far as I have without the technology environment provided by our school. I come from an engineering family and as you can see, I'm in the same shoes as many students past, present and future. Please back this campaign and together we can make a change. To keep up to date with the campaign join the Facebook group set up by Toby Roworth (an ex-pupil, famous for building a black chopper bicycle for his A level project) https://www.facebook.com/?ref=home#!/pages/Stop-Reading-School-removing-ResMat-as-a-GCSE-option/331089790259257 You can find a copy of his letter to the governors as a basis of your campaigns and further inspiration. Thank you.


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