Aspirations and Expectations

David Filmer: Low Expectations

David Filmer was born in 1970 in London. At six his family moved to Hampshire, where he attended his local mainstream primary school. Then aged ten he went to two residential special schools, first in Reading and then Hampshire. He returned to the mainstream at sixteen, attending a local sixth form college and went on to university.

Here David talks about the expectations within his school and society.

  • David Filmer


I'm not sure what the school expectation was, the teachers' expectation. I think they felt they would do their best for us and encourage us but, they were dealing with very mixed levels of ability, and therefore it was quite difficult to set higher expectations and aspirations for people, because I don't think they had the opportunity to be able to teach a wide enough curriculum, and to offer the choices that you might need if you were going to aspire to great things. I think there wasn't a strong academic encouragement, it was, I think, probably the attitude of many people back in the seventies, that I remember, and the early eighties was that, you know, if you were disabled, you probably weren't going to amount to much, a huge amount and therefore education was about, hopefully making you a rounded enough adult to be able to cope with Society - but not much more beyond that.

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