Wednesday, 18 June 2008

Get voting!

On the subject of schools, I'm somewhat surprised by what appears to be an almost total lack of interest in the poll on my website on how we can raise school standards in Bristol. The website is getting more than 2000 hits some days (and they can't all be my mother) but no-one is voting. My theories are (a) most of the people who look at the website aren't from Bristol, or (b) people only vote when it's a for or against poll, i.e. a battle to be won, or (c) people have been given too many choices and can't decide what answer to opt for. (The last poll, which had five options too, didn't attract that much attention either). I know the polls are unscientific, but I am genuinely interested in the results. I think the next one will have to be something more controversial...

4 comments:

thebristolblogger said...

Kerry,

Speaking as a fully paid-up internet controversialist, I think the problem with your poll is that the options are way too narrow as well as being a bit on the dull side.

The only options you're offering are variations on existing Labour policies, which most of us have had eleven years to conclude will not work very well.

Bearing in mind (present company excepted of course) that your average blog user tends to be an over-opinionated, frothing-at-the-mouth, politically extreme looney of some sort, you might get more response if you introduced some controversial options from other political outlooks such as "bring back grammar schools" or "Introduce a voucher scheme".

Although you might find the results are not exactly to your taste ...

Kerry said...

Fair point. Although then you'd doutbless get people suggesting that I'm advocating bringing back grammar schools on my website. Especially if, as you say, the results aren't quite to my liking.

I'm slightly hampered by the fact that the main website isn't allowed to be party political, because it's paid for out of public funds, (also, the poll has to be on a local issue too, which rules out a lot of options). It's arguable that positing a choice between Labour and Conservative proposals could be seen as straying too much into political territory. But if it wasn't based on clear dividing lines it would probably be do-able. (And seeing as I don't know what the Conservative or Lib Dem policies are on most things....)

thebristolblogger said...

Bringing back grammar schools is no longer Conservative policy. Cameron engineered a big row about it last year with some of the Tory press even talking it up as his "Clause 4 moment". Remember?

Neither are vouchers Tory policy - although they talk about them a bit. This means there's actually an interesting policy going begging here. Although I suspect the Labour Party wouldn't like it as it takes power over our children's education away from the state and local councillors and bureaucrats and hands it directly to people like me - parents.

Kerry said...

On grammar schools, yes, I remember the Graham Brady affair - but didn't they still say that more grammar schools would be allowed in areas that already had them? And I wouldn't be so sure that last year's row was the end of the matter:

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1028558/If-Cameron-seen-light-grammar-schools-theres-real-hope-Tories.html