Toby Young, who has been appointed to the board of the new Office for Students, once said that running free schools was harder than he thought. He decided to quit:
His school was also rejected by the Department for Education (DfE) when it applied to open a second school:
Yet the government made him universities regulator instead.
Young has been unflattering of working class students, referring to them as ‘stains’:
Young has also called for the repeal of the Equality Act, arguing that disabled children should be excluded from schools, referring to them as ‘functionally illiterate troglodyte[s]’ – a fact he allegedly tried to obscure when his appointment was announced:
Not satisfied with disrespecting students, he also infamously showed an utter ignorance of what being a teacher really entails, claiming it’s ‘not that tough’ and only really involved working 9am-3.30pm with six weeks holiday:
Everytime #TobyYoung trends, my Fairy Godmother says to me "you must tweet that video."
So, here you go folks. pic.twitter.com/kdJjOwgJmf
— Teacher Toolkit (@TeacherToolkit) January 1, 2018
And his Twitter history includes some seriously – well, troglodytic moments:
If all that doesn’t make it hard enough to claim that Young has the status and dignity a senior role requires, here he is pictured in bed with S*n scribbler Harry Cole and Fawkes blogger Paul Staines:
The University and College Union was about as far from impressed as could be:
But a disturbing aspect of the government’s appointment of the man who chose the Twitter handle ‘toadmeister’ may be revealed in a tweet by an eminently qualified candidate who applied for the position handed to Young:
Nazir Afzal OBE applied and didn’t even get an interview, in spite of his experience and qualifications listed above. He happens to be a member of the Asian community.
Of course, the government’s failure to even interview him may have had nothing to do with his brown skin. It might instead have been driven by the fact that Mr Afzal’s politics are less aligned with the government’s and that his sympathies are less with the Establishment.
For example, his tweet following the Grenfell Tower memorial service last month was uncompromising:
In view of the facts, Mr Young’s appointment – and the failure to even interview candidates who seem far better equipped to actually do the job – may have been driven far more by politics than by any wish on the part of the Tories to actually make life better for students or to help universities provide the best education and experience.
At the very least, we can say with certainty that at least one highly-qualified candidate with brown skin was ignored while a white man considered crass and offensive by many was ushered into the job.
Which calls into serious question the Tories’ motives for creating the position and choosing the person to fill it.
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