A whole lot of folk have worked themselves up in a lather of indignation because a few thousand young people left their schools last Friday to protest about the lack of governmental action about climate change. A few of the more insightful protesters also had schools' own curriculum conservatism and inaction in view as well.
To the bureaucratic mind this protest is no different to bunking off (or whatever it's called where you live), or jetting off for a cheaper family holiday in the sun/snow/bush/whatever, and this has resulted in a righteous demand for punishment – and some amazing stupid schools have even internally suspended the students involved thus ensuring that [i] they miss even more "unmissable" lessons, and [ii] "hard-working teachers" have to work even harder. Beyond belief ...
I note that there were some schools and teachers that encouraged (and/or seemed to give permission for) students to take the day off. But this was only because they approved of the subject of the protest. When someone wants to go on, let's say a pro-Brexit or anti-immigration march, it will be a different matter. Anyway, surely no self-respecting student would want a teacher's approval to protest.
For me, criticising the lack of curriculum attention is more apt for a student that criticising the lack of climate policy, although both matter. The government clearly could do something about ensuring that the curriculum is brought up to date, but it doesn't and I have explored why I think that is elsewhere. And so could schools. I wonder how many schools faced with this Friday absenteeism will decide to give serious attention to climate (and many other) issues within their own curriculum structures. Not many, I guess. Not for the first time I find myself regretting that the NUS doesn't operate in schools. Now that would sort out complacent / unimaginative headteachers and governors.
Meanwhile, all power to the Friday protests.