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Getting the balance right

I WAS disappointed at your coverage of the Office for Standards in Education report on South Tyneside (TES, January 19).

The report was critical and we will be working with a support team to effect improvements, but your article was in no way an accurate description of what was said. The report listed eight weaknesses and nine strengths. You reported two strengths and five weaknesses and included a very unhelpful photograph of a graffiti-covered wall.

Far from failing to support schools, the report indicated that we have ontinued to support many schools too much, not in line with the current code of practice. I should also point out that the report shows that schools perform well when compared with statistical neighbours, particularly at key stage 3 in English.

We will work hard to improve, and an urgent task will be to maintain morale in challenging circumstances. I am not sure that your unbalanced article will help.

Ian Reid

Director of education

South Tyneside Metropolitan Council

South Shields, Tyne and Wear

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