Supply staff on the cheap?

Tes Editorial

Supply teachers will be dismayed at government plans to introduce super support staff with the powers to supervise classes in teachers' absence.

Supply teachers are skilled and qualified members of the teaching profession who do far more than "supervise". My specialist skills, for instance, include creative writing, drama sessions and history walks. Heads tend to look upon me as an additional educational resource when I am replacing colleagues in primary and secondary schools. These talents were acknowledged recently by an assessor for threshold payment.

The standard of teaching and classroom discipline will clearly fall if support staff take charge of pupils' education.

If this Government is to be convincing about raising standards it needs to do better than introduce cheap labour into the classroom.

Gregory Holyoake 74 Middle Street Deal Kent

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