Axe this failed turkey now

16th September 2005 at 01:00
Huw Thomas was fairly generous to the General Teaching Council. The GTC has utterly failed to capture the hearts and minds of the profession - exemplified by the paltry 10 per cent turnout at the last GTC elections.

One of the main criticisms of the GTC is the adversarial and unseemly hearings (more than 100 have taken place, average cost pound;12,000). In many cases teachers have attended without adequate legal representation.

Where the case has not been proven, teachers have suffered from the inevitable trial by media and the accompanying lurid tabloid headlines.

There is also the suspicion that some headteachers are bypassing employment tribunals, where the burden of proof and costs are greater.

For shameful timidity, crass handling of disciplinary cases, woeful failure to engage with teachers and almost total invisibility, the GTC is a suitable case for euthanasia. Failing that unlikely event - would turkeys vote for an early Christmas? Next election, I'm going to stand on a simple, three-word programme, "Scrap the GTC". Anyone care to join me?

Richard Knights. 16 The Fairway. Liverpool

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