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Common sense OK

Huw Thomas is wrong to imply that we do not trust untrained or unknown persons to undertake responsible tasks (TES November 1). The jury system has long established the principle that an important role can be played by properly directed and informed laymen.

There is no question that governors must be thoroughly vetted and trained in the breadth and technicalities of school management. The creation of "professional" governors, however, is a dangerous path to follow, for it leads to the possibility of political interference. Given the already heavy political involvement in the management of schools, we might, after all, be better trusting in the integrity and common sense of the well-informed and well-trained common man and woman.

Dr Colin Pickering is a governor in Bristol.

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