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Talented staff miss out on pay

All long-serving teachers have recently been given the opportunity to pass the so-called "threshold" which recognises the good quality of their performance, through improved status and monetary reward - a pound;2,000 lump sum this year.

Fine as far as it goes, but the scheme ignores, indeed almost wilfully obstructs, use of a significant pool of talent.

Teachers wishing to return to the profession after a career break of more than two years cannot be considered for the scheme.

This is because, in order to qualify, staff must produce evidence in test and assessment esults that shows pupils' progress over the past two to three years. This applies despite returners having substantial evidence of the high quality of their work up to the time of their break. Bureaucracy is sidelining inspirational and conscientious teachers.

Is not the Government, with this niggardly box-ticking mentality, keeping some of the best and most hardworking teachers out of our schools? How must those who return feel? Welcomed? Valued?

Elizabeth Henderson

Headteacher

Oldfield primary school, Chiltern Road

Maidenhead, Berkshire

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