Philip Parkin, general secretary of “Voice: the union for education professionals”, has spoken out in a comprehensive interview covering a number of controversial areas of the existing education system.
The first four questions were based on the proliferation of WiFi in UK primary and secondary schools and whether the rollout is appropriate in the light of existence evidence and understanding of the science on similar technologies. In response to these, Philip covered the most relevant points from the point of view of concern over the uncertainty of whether a risk will be present, and if so what sort of prevalence and severity the increase in risk is likely to be:
* “There seems to be an increasing quantity of evidence being produced around the world which suggests that exposure to electromagnetic radiation can have long-term health impacts both on children and adults but particularly children.”
* “It is a considerable concern that in schools we are installing wi-fi systems and we have no clear evidence that they are safe.”
* “We are not trying to turn back the tide as far as technology is concerned but we have to be sure that as well as doing a job for us, and there is no question that wi-fi does a wonderful job, we have to be absolutely sure that it is safe.”
* “Scientists do not say anything with one voice, but there is advice out there. For example, our own Health Protection Agency gives clear advice on children using mobile phones and that children should only use mobile phones in emergencies, and yet no one takes any notice of that.”
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