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Image problems

The TES Magazine cover story "Will your past catch up with you?" (January 15) symptomised what is going wrong in teaching and society. The provocative nature of the images used drew you into a story that was mainly anecdotal and scaremongering.

It did not address the serious nature of the McCarthy-style hunts which the toothless unions seem to accept as part of teaching. The General Teaching Council of England's system takes a "holier than thou" attitude to those who have made a minor "mistake" - and the media is culpable for insisting on documenting every tribunal.

While the education world seems to have great sympathy for those that, say, have serious alcohol or mental health problems, it questions why some teachers enjoy an alternative lifestyle outside of school. As an ex-teacher I miss the interaction with my students and colleagues. I don't miss paying for a "professional" board that dictates what I can and can't do in my private life.

Former teacher, Name and address withheld.

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