The Curmudgeon


Thursday, February 04, 2016

Infant Rehabilitation

Given that the Government's prioritisation of mental health appears to consist in slinging the vulnerable into prison and leaving the problem to solve itself, it should come as no surprise that the Home Office is now plotting to put police commissioners in charge of "troubled children". Since the last parliament's attacks on schools and the law have worked out so jolly well, Mad Tessie May has decided to ram the two together Mandingo-style and see what comes of it. Possibly Mad Tessie May has been absorbing Foucault's Discipline and Punish, which draws some facile francophone comparisons between prisons and schools; more likely she is thinking of the commercial welfare of those charming people at G4S, with whom she has almost no marital connection whatever. She has also been inspired by a Conservative police and crime commissioner who, having all the requisite qualifications (viz. an MSc in Politics and Government), plans to open a "free school" with a "crime-specific curriculum" for "troubled children" of four years and older. The school will also aspire to mould "young people on the cusp of crime or interested in joining the police" - that or having, of course, not the slightest tinge of Boolean over-inclusionism. The borstal is already oversubscribed, and it remains to be seen how many of those cherry-picked for attendance will be "troubled" and how many will instead be the kind to keep a policeman's lot a fairly happy one.


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