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A gold star is not good enough

WE wonder if our school is in a unique position with regard to the Government's achievement awards ("Rewards for doing the job properly", TES, March 16).

We were recently awarded a gold star in the inspectors' annual report. We received a personal letter of congratulation from chief inspector Mike Tomlinson in which he identified us as being "particularly successful". The Department for Education and Employment has invited us to apply for "Beacon" school status.

You would think we must be the sort of school which would qualify for an achievement award. owever, we do not.

Putting aside the questionable status of such awards, we asked the DFEE why our school didn't qualify and were told that we didn't meet the criteria.

Apparently we are good enough to light the way for others, but not good enough to receive any money for doing so.

The real issue concerns conflicting criteria for success within the DFEE. We wonder if someone from the department could use your columns to explain this inconsistency?

The teaching staff

Sowe Valley primary school

Princethorpe Way

Coventry

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