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Councils, not teachers, should bear the brunt of cuts

Last week's TESS provided food for thought. On page 26, there was an advertisement for a new director of education, learning and leisure at Aberdeenshire Council. Aberdeenshire has recently been forced to fund an investigation into allegations against its former director of education, Bruce Robertson, as well as paying him his full salary for the six months in which he was suspended. His replacement will be paid pound;109,827, plus a relocation package.

Meanwhile, on the front page there was a story about the potential threat to teachers' pay and conditions. In these times of economic difficulty, surely the principal target of cost savings should not be the teachers but the councils. With education policy being set nationally, effective CPD and curricular support being provided by professional organisations, headteachers being responsible for their own budgets and the direct funding model working perfectly well at Jordanhill School, why not simply cut out the middle man and get rid of local council education departments?

Cutting the pay and increasing the hours of teachers will have a negative impact on learning and teaching. Cutting education jobs at the council will go largely unnoticed.

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