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Pre-war tips for failing schools

I trained as a teacher just before the Second World War and taught all my life till retirement. I still have my handbook of suggestions for teachers, acquired at college.

Whereas we have our excellent schools today, there are those in difficult neighbourhoods that are failing. Why? My handbook says. The good school will "seek to "develop to the full the potentialities of every child and "set standards of behaviour, effort and attainment, by which the pupils can measure their own conduct".

But, it says,"the ultimate test will be whether it assists in the development of citizens who desire the common good and are prepared to make sacrifices to secure and maintain it".

Slowly, but surely, the Government has to reach out with money and wise counsellors to re-direct and bring hope to those despairing communities, widespread in our cities.

Mary Patterson

37A Middle Road


Brentwood, Essex

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