Si wrote:My view is that it could have been handled a bit better - lots of people have been very confused as to what is happening when!
I also fear that it may lead to us losing a number of volunteer instructors who don't have the time or inclination to do new CPDs, sign up to a new system, get re-assessed (or whatever they are calling it now) and certainly don't have the money to do the payments for that and the sign up thingy.
And we'll lose another load because they have been working basically free from an ITO (given how some ITOs seem to have existed in name only as far as instructors were concerned) and thus the changes won't have been communicated properly.
I have four volunteers that work with me who know very little about what they have to do to continue. Their ITOs have not contacted them. Thus they have decided not to do any more teaching until they can work it all out.
Cycling Scotland's position has been "Business as usual, don't call us, we'll call you, when anything's going to change. Which is, I think, as it should be. To be honest I think the fact that they've changed will have flown by almost everyone on the ground. I've not come across anything suggesting the state of progress on resource revisions.
Si wrote:HOWEVER, I feel that although they are adding some improvements to the NSs (or to the bikeability method), they are basically going to a lot of effort to tinker with the wrong thing. Our problem (as the cycling world) is not that the current NSs or bikeability methods are that wrong, but that they do nothing to get kids riding. As I've related before: I've had kids in Y6 do L2 and do really well on it. Then I've met them again in Y7 at big school where they wanted to do L3....but virtually none of them had been using their L2 in the intervening period so I basically had to do L2 from scratch again and then do as much L3 in the remaining time...knowing that I was probably wasting my time because once they'd had their bikeability 'treat' they were not going to go anywhere near a road on the bike again, let alone ride to school. What bikeability really needs to concentrate on is getting them riding to school and other places once they have done their bikeability.....that would actually do everyone some good, unlike tinkering with the standard and methods.
I think you've hit the (or at least a
) nail on the head.
Anecdata from my own experience, but what I've generally seen is cycling is popular at Primary over the summer term with the P6 (Yr 5) pupils we were teaching and a fair few P7s who'd done it the previous year, and there were the usual odd children of "cycling families" from lower years. All in all the bike shed at the 200-roll primary did good-to-overflowing business in summer, fair business in Autumn and some business in winter. And then you go up to Big School (roll 1400), less than 2 miles up the road from that primary, and I've never needed to take my socks off to count the number of bikes in the racks there. Cycling is not cool at secondary for most of the kids most of the time, and with so many of them being incredibly image conscious I think that's the main problem, underpinned by their carers having been brainwashed that you're Doomed unless you dress up in a way many teens will think of as like geeks.
I've stopped doing Bikeability Scotland now because the local authorities I delivered it for took exception to me not riding in a lid and hi-viz as I wanted to provide a normalised cycling role model. I have no interest in adding to the brainwashing, particularly as I was giving up my time for free.
If cycling was portrayed in training like the figures on the front of the Association of Bikeability Schemes website
I suspect there'd be a better chance. But the reality is not normal kids dressed as, well, normal kids, but a sea of dayglo. While we implicitly teach (backed by Highway Code 59) that dayglo and lids is the only
way to ride properly we're shooting ourselves in the foot with impressionable, image conscious young people. And that message is nothing to do with Bikeability or the National Standards, it's forced on us externally, usually by Local Authorities.