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Full-spectrum colour blindness

It is not often that I agree with the views of education secretary for England Michael Gove but his comments about the educational experience of black students warrant support. However, his remarks in a speech earlier this week about more needing to be done to create a "colour-blind society" should be extended through those black students' classroom experiences to vocational and life experience and opportunities.

As one example, recent research we undertook indicates that the opportunities for black students to qualify and gain employment as teachers are proportionately far less than those of white students. Therefore the modelling of teaching as a black profession is strictly limited and minimised. Indeed, across our national teaching workforce only London presents a representative profile of black teachers, with certain cities - some of which have large historical black populations - recording disgracefully low representation.

Professor Bill Boyle, Manchester Institute of Education, University of Manchester.

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