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Living in testing times

What a sad indictment of education when Sarah Simons admits that experience has taught her to teach more towards the test using the old worn out "functional" methods ("Giving up on gimmicks", Comment, 25 October). "Engaging (students) was central to my teaching mission," she writes. Was: past tense.

This is what league tables, England's schools inspectorate Ofsted and "learning walks" do: they turn engaging, creative educators into standardised automatons who must churn out the results, no matter what. I sincerely hope that I am not seeing shades of myself in that article in five to 10 years' time.

Nia Faulder, Lecturer in biology, INTO Manchester.

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