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Every little helps...

Every cloud has a silver lining, they say. This week teachers learned of their demotion from the top social class to that of second-class citizens, rubbing shoulders with the disreputable likes of the journalists who produce The TES. And then a creative way was found to solve the no-cover action. Top-notch professionals generally don't get overtime. Standard-class citizens often do. Hey presto - not only is pound;20 an hour on offer for teachers covering unstaffed classes, but there is a cautious feeling that short-term - and if legal - this might sugar the pill sufficiently.

Now i a few more enterprising schools post plaintive pupils outside supermarkets wearing Teach Me badges, maybe the underlying recruitment problem can be solved too. As a public service, perhaps the supermarkets could divulge where most ex-teachers shop (heads at Waitrose? heads of department at Sainsburys? Asda for NQTs?) The American idea of heads bribing kids to read books by promising to kiss something unpalatable if they do won't help retention. But would it boost recruitment if David Blunkett promised to pucker up to something repulsive if the training targets are met?

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