Aspirations and Expectations

Clenton Farquarson: No Encouragement

Clenton Farquarson was born in Birmingham in 1964. He grew up in Birmingham and went to his local mainstream schools.

Here Clenton talks about the low expectations his teachers had for him and his classmates.

  • Clenton Farquarson
  • Clenton Farquarson
  • Clenton Farquarson


So everyone in my group did nothing. So we didn’t really learn and the teachers didn’t try and encourage us to learn. I remember a teacher – the first teacher said everyone in our class would either be in prison or, you know, do a labouring – low skilled jobs. They didn’t try and help us to gain, you know, our aspirations or anything like that. That was the first issue – that I felt that I was different from everyone.

No teacher at that time spotted I had Dyslexia. And that’s what is the most bitter and annoying thing about the education system. I was, you know, I was put out – I was put out and stopped to really get my life chances, you know. And it stopped my progression, you know, my aspirations, because I didn’t even have an aspiration, because I thought you would be too – what’s the point in dreaming or hoping you can do something when it’s been crushed? ‘Cause at the time I was told I would never amount to anything so the best thing you should do is be a labourer. So I didn’t realise you could even think about being more than you could be, so that was a real eye-opener.