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The shopping list

Name: Frances Marriott

Position: Headteacher of Rachel McMillan nursery school, Deptford, London borough of Southwark

Q If you had David Blunkett's budget what would your priority be?

A Nursery schools and play. I would slow down formal education for the under-fives. When the inspectors came to my nursery they expected to see three-year-olds sitting properly at desks. Look at Scandinavia, where children don't go to school until they are six. I would also invest in training for early-years teachers.

Q If you had a blank cheue for your own school what would you buy?

A The school's falling down. I would spend money on the buildings; the loos and bathrooms are from the 1930s. They're dreadful. Since the Inner London Education Authority was abolished we've had no new furniture, and we need more more books and toys.

Q What treat would you buy yourself?

A I'd take early retirement and a holiday in Goa.

Frances Marriott was talking to Stephanie Northen. If you'd like to publish a shopping list for education please e-mail

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