How many times have you heard these phrases?

Let’s play a game.  When you next go to a conference or any meeting, let’s see how many of these phrases you hear.

  • “raising aspirations”


  • “fulfilling potential”


  • “achieving goals”


  • “families at the heart”


  • “users at the heart”


  • “young people at the heart”


  • “heart of the reforms”


  • “children and young people are central to the reforms”


  • “I want to reassure you that there is a commitment from us”


  • “there are times of course that it doesn’t always work all of the time”


  • “focussing on positive outcomes”


  • “I want you to reflect on how far we have come”


  • “much to celebrate and much to be proud of”


  • “It’s critical”


  • “the ambition of the reforms”


  • “improving the quality of the support”


  • “we are already seeing positive change”


  • “I THINK they are improving services”

Repeated and repeated.   Blah Blah Blah Blah Blah.

Nothing new.  Nothing honest.

Nothing that reflects the reality of our families.

Let us know how many you hear this week.

Translate those phrases:

How about we translate these phrases into the phrases that show the reality?

  • “Raising Aspirations” becomes “We cannot afford for him to have aspirations” or, if you’re lucky, “we cannot afford for him to have aspirations, sorry”


  • Families at the heart becomes “families – a pain in the ****”


  • “I want to reassure you….” becomes “I want to reassure you but…….”


  • We are already seeing positive change” becomes “Hey, one LA had one family that was really happy”


What translations of common phrases would you suggest we add to the list?






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1 Response

  1. Andrew Sutton says:

    ‘among the most vulnerable on our society’, this is never quantified and would add nothing to the discussion if it were. It is presumably meant yo imply, by extension that the speaker is among our society’s most worthy and admirable.

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