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Narrow-minded GTC

IN INSISTING that classroom assistants "should have no involvement in teaching duties" (TESS, September 18) the General Teaching Council is being narrow-minded and exclusive, if not curmudgeonly. It is a matter of course that no one should be able to "walk into a classroom and be involved . . . in the teaching of reading and mathematics". But it is precisely in such activities as hearing a pupil read or helping one through a sum that an assistant can best help a busy teacher.

Ivor Sutherland and his colleagues should engage their expertise in devising methods of training and qualifying classroom aides rather than try to turn the clock back.

Bill Gatherer, Edinburgh.

(gatherer@argonet.co.uk)

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