Church offers much to poorest

16th September 2005 at 01:00
The headline "Church trails in support for poor" (TES, September 2) distorts what your article actually reports.

The piece contains no evidence to support the insinuation that somehow Church of England schools are excluding children from poorer families. As someone who makes regular visits to faith and non-faith primary schools, I have never encountered this.

Many Church of England primary schools were built in the 1800s, with a disproportionately high number of them in rural areas where the traditional Anglican influence was strong. At the time, rural areas contained many poor people for whom free education was of great benefit. These schools still serve rural areas that - due to car ownership - now have a higher proportion of better-off families. The Church also built many schools in the expanding Victorian cities; these schools tended to be in among the working-class terraces. Many of these schools, and the terraces which supplied their children, have now been redeveloped.

Will The TES therefore be suggesting "bussing" city children out to rural primaries?

Edward Green. 168 Loose Road. Maidstone, Kent

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