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Not level, more an uphill struggle;Letter

In your report on the consequences for some regions of the Teacher Training Agency's allocation of in-service funding for award-bearing courses ("Outrage as training landscape shifts", TES, March 13), you quote the principal adviser for Liverpool as saying "it levels the playing field". For what game, may one ask?

I was not aware that the Liverpool education authority ran, or hoped to run, postgraduate or post-experience courses leading to diplomas, masters degrees or doctorates. If they did, they would need validation, presumably from one of those three university providers in Liverpool whose work is to be wiped out. As it is, given that the Open University's provision has also been wiped out, any Liverpool teachers who aspire to higher awards will probably have to set out at the end of a busy day on a long twilight journey to distant parts - and pay for themselves; unless, of course, the Liverpool authority proposes to take care of that. If it does not, then Liverpool's vision for its teachers is less a level playing field but more a vandalised playpark.

Happily, as your report demonstrates, other local authorities appear to show a greater level of concern for their teachers, recognising that higher education's work is a small, specialised, but very important supplement, to their own broader provision.

IAN KANE

Chair Universities Council for the Education of Teachers 58 Gordon Square London WC1

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