Consultants are a waste of money

28th September 2001 at 01:00
Government-appointed consultants, PricewaterhouseCoopers, say that in order to ease workload pressure, schools should consider giving teachers more non-contact time, make more use of support staff and technology, and streamline planning and administration ("Boost to hopes for lighter workload", TES, September 14).

I don't want to embarrass anybody, but one of my teaching assistants who is also a dinner supervisor and governor suggested similar strategies to me two years ago, and all have now been implemented!

The tragedy is, having spent horrendous sums on consultants, no one is telling school leaders anything we don't know.

At last year's performance pay courses, that all heads had to attend, consultants were paid millions just to re-read scripts we had already seen.

Consultants Hay McBer, after research costing pound;4 million, revealed that effective teachers need: high expectations; good lesson planning; a variety of techniquesassessment methods; clear strategies; effective resources; and homework. My staff has been doing all this for some years.

So, ministers, before you waste any more precious cash, think before you leap. For just pound;18 you can sound out my assistant for a whole morning. The terrifying thing is, your results may be just as enlightening.

KA Bullock.

19 Longmeadow

Bury St Edmunds

Suffolk

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