Basic problem

10th September 2004 at 01:00
Today I'm angry. Yesterday, on the doorstep of our basic skills education centre stood a 12-year-old who could not read, despite seven years in school. His mother held a 20-page statement from school outlining his problems and proposed solutions. Nowhere did it mention that he could not read.

The head who signed that document should resign. Led by a government that seeks a 15 per cent failure rate, knowing this "aspiration" means one in five kids will leave school illiterate, he is not exceptional. He is just one of thousands who go through the motions of teaching. These people spoil the efforts of those in the profession who actually care about young people.

Mr Headmaster and your ilk, I urge you to seek a career change. Or take sick leave. Or just sit, do nothing, and let those more able get on with their work. Please, please, please, stop turning children into rejects.

Keith Taylor

104 Cliffe Avenue

Baildon

Shipley, West Yorkshire

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