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College of what?

Schools minister Estelle Morris was on top form in front of the Lords science select committee on Tuesday on the professional development of science teachers. The new General Teaching Council, she enthused, was a magnificent chance to create a proper framework for the profession.

But what about the College of Teachers, the royal chartered professional institution hat has been around since 1849, asked one unusually well-informed peer. Er..."I would prefer not to comment," said the minister, "I am not sufficiently aware of the organisation".

George Varnava, vice-president of that august institution (formerly the College of Preceptors), was not too down-hearted. "I suppose any publicity is good publicity," he said.

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