Real values

Professor Colin Richards (Letters, July 18) may be correct to say that what really matters in education cannot be measured, in the sense that it cannot be turned into data for analysis. However, we might have hoped he would go on to say it is possible to describe those elements of human development that really matter to us - matters of honesty, respect for others, self-understanding, ability to build relationships, a sense of what is for the common good that we can promote.

Would that we could accept schools' descriptions of what they are trying to achieve, and give them credit for what they actually do, even when the statistics fall short of the all-pervading "targets". Ofsted would have to spend more than a day or two to collect such descriptions, but it would be worth it for the more accurate picture of what really happens in schools.

Dr Tony Wenman Claygate, Surrey.

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