Tuesday, 10 November 2015

Hopscotch is hopping mad

From the Scottish Daily Telegraph:

Glasgow theatre company denies its play for schools lays ground for `state guardians`

A THEATRE company yesterday emphatically denied accusations that a play it is performing in Scottish primary schools is helping lay the ground for the SNP`s plan to assign each child a `state guardian`.

The Hopscotch Theatre Company, based in Glasgow, said the Scottish Government`s controversial named person scheme is not mentioned in the production called Rights of the Child.

It has invited the No To Named Person campaign, which claimed the play was `softening up` children for the scheme to a meeting so it can demonstrate the company has `nothing to do with politics.`

The company also complained that its Facebook site was inundated with abuse and had to be taken down after an article in the Mail on Sunday that reported the campaign`s claims about the play...

Raymond Burke, the show`s writer, said: "Clearly some mistake has been made by the person who wrote the article. The named person scheme is not mentioned or discussed at all in our show.

We are and always have been artistically independent and apolitical..."

The hour-long show, which costs schools £405 each, tells the story of a pupil who dreams about visiting the UN headquarters, then wakes up enthused about telling his classmates what they are entitled to...

Freedom of speech

Freedom of speech is not a right that Hopscotch seems to recognise because criticism of the company`s play is seen by them as abuse.

After closing down their Facebook page, Hopscotch opened up another page, and again received criticism from the same commentators, but this time Hopscotch was criticised for their exaggerated report to the Telegraph.

Some of those who commented were savvy enough to take screenshots of the pages which showed strong, but insightful comments - hardly abusive.

Artistically independent and apolitical

It matters little that the play did not mention the Named Person - this is the stuff of slippery eels.

As the very well informed parents were able to point out to Hopscotch on its Facebook page, SHANARRI and GIRFEC are fundamental aspects of the Named Person scheme.

So it is hardly apolitical to have children singing in praise of SHANARRI and Mr and Mrs GIRFEC !

United Nations

At the end of November there is going to be a meeting in Paris to discuss the possibility of a binding agreement to reduce global carbon emissions.

If the UN gets its way, carbon taxes will have the effect of keeping third world nations from developing, and will exacerbate austerity in developed countries.

None of this is apolitical or without controversy. All of it has impacts on children.

Perhaps Hopscotch needs to own up to the political `double whammy` their play was inflicting on Scottish children.  

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