Class still hogs the headlines
Last Sunday there were two teacher supply stories in the national papers.
The Observer suggested children across Britain were now being taught by "cut-price helpers" to save money. The Sunday Telegraph broke the story of Tristram Jones-Parry, head of chart-topping Westminster school who had been told by the General Teaching Council for England that he could not be registered to teach in a state school in spite of years of successful experience and a shortage of 3,500 maths teachers.
Both stories were based on questionable assumptions. But the one that caused a hue and cry that was to last for days after was not the thousands of children deprived of a qualified teacher but the slight offered to Mr Jones-Parry.
To his credit, the independent school head wished to "give a bit back".
Taken literally, there was nothing to stop him: volunteers in the classroom need no qualifications. Nor are there many obstacles left to prevent a state school paying him for his trouble, whether he has qualified status or not.
And it now seems there is indeed a way to recognise him as a teacher without sending him back to college or enrolling him on a training scheme.
So if nothing else, the furore has at least publicised this option to other suitable candidates.
As Mr Jones-Parry himself accepts, it is entirely reasonable that some formal check should be made on the qualifications and suitability of anyone who wants to teach in a publicly-provided school or work as a doctor in an NHS hospital. If there is a whiff of scandal here it is that so many parents apparently pay for private education where this is not a requirement.
There was no obvious sex or religion in this story and the only mystery is quite why it proved such a potent one. That leaves class.