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Make room for teachers' college;Letter

THE SEARCH for a first teaching council leader (TES, February 26) highlights how far we have come in the creation of a general teaching council since I first attended the debates in the House of Lords in the early 1990s.

GTC Limited put in many hours of thought and lobbying to get the idea accepted by government and while not being in a position to comment on the other "contenders" you mention, its chairman John Tomlinson would merit consideration as caretaker.

I am pleased now that the proposed mix of 64 members will ensure that the council is an independent body. The GTC will, initially at least, manage the registration of teachers.

I was delighted when I met Charles Clarke MP recently and he agreed to consider, together with other nominees, the possibility of including the president of the College of Teachers as a member of the GTC.

The 100 headteachers in Oxfordshire, who I had the privilege of speaking to last week, agreed that we need an independent professional body where teachers can share and develop experience across phases, schools and subject groupsdepartments. The College of Teachers has a charter which will enable it to do just that, and it will be happy to work with and inform the work of the GTC.

I hope the College of Teachers would want a reciprocal member from the GTC on its own council to ensure smooth communication. Your readers can confidently expect to hear much more from the College of Teachers in the future.

Lord Butterfield of Stechford 39 Clarendon Street Cambridge

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