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An apology

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The investigations team has been so focused on determining how and why the school was closed that we appear to have neglected a series of recurring quesions that will simply not go away.

Sadly, and try as we might, we cannot answer them.

  1. “How can those education officers at PKC live with themselves after the harm they have done to so many pupils and staff?”

  2. “How do they sleep at night?”

  3. “How can they look at themselves in a mirror and not see the ugliness of their own personalities?”

  4. “What on earth do they tell their own families about what they have done to others?”

  5. “What motivates them to be so cruel to vulnerable children and young people?”

  6. “With corruption like this, can Scotland really aspire to be an independent nation?”

  7. “What on earth possesses a care inspector to destroy such a caring community?”

  8. “If you can’t trust the regulators, who can you trust?”

  9. “These are the people at the top of the education system and yet they are the least ‘responsible citizens’ because of the harm that they have done, and they refuse to acknowledge their mistakes, so they are ‘highly unsuccessful learners’. How can they walk into schools and make judgements when they themselves are so deficient?”

  10. “If the system were fair, and judgements were made intelligently and based on evidence rather than innuendo, PKC would have been shut down years ago. Why hasn’t that happened?”

  11. “Why did not one person stop and say, “this is wrong"? Is there nobody out there with any integrity?”

  12. “Will our children ever trust adults again? How can they after the cruelty that was done to them?”

In trying to understand how and why personnel in the Care Inspectorate, PKC etc behave as they do, it might be worth reading the following which helps to explain how people become corrupted by the toxic cultures that surround them;

Asch Conformity Study

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Study Conducted by: Dr. Solomon Asch

Study Conducted in 1951 at Swarthmore College

Experiment Details: Dr. Solomon Asch conducted a groundbreaking study that was designed to evaluate a person’s likelihood to conform to a standard when there is pressure to do so.

A group of participants were shown pictures with lines of various lengths and were then asked a simple question: Which line is longest? The tricky part of this study was that in each group only one person was a true participant. The others were actors with a script. Most of the actors were instructed to give the wrong answer. Strangely, the one true participant almost always agreed with the majority, even though they knew they were giving the wrong answer.

The results of this study are important when we study social interactions among individuals in groups. This study is a famous example of the temptation many of us experience to conform to a standard during group situations and it showed that people often care more about being the same as others than they do about being right.


Bill Colley