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How good can poached staff be?

YOUR editorial was absolutely right about the threat to local democracy from privatisation (TES, October 20).

The Government clearly believes the private sector can run education better than local authorities. On a recent radio programme Estelle Morris admitted that even successful authorities could have services privatised.

So isn't it a rich irony that the much-vaunted private sector should need to pinch staff from authorities to carry out their take-over plans? And one wonders at the quality ofstaff they are recruiting. Admitedly, here in Newham we will lose an able director and deputy to the private sector.

Yet other "failed" authorities are being "helped", if that is the word, by private-sector staff headhunted from authorities which failed Office for Standards in Education inspections.

Truly this is a magical mystery tour, and one which shows no signs of lasting benefit for British education.

Christopher J Humphreys

57 Romford Road

Stratford

London E15

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