Double London allowance

12th January 2001 at 00:00
THERE is a desperate and worsening shortage of teachers in London.

If allowed to continue we face a return to the part-time education London experienced in the 1970s to the detriment of the capital's pupils.

London has the highest cost of living in Europe and is in the top 10 in the world with the average house price pound;200,000 - even so, the starting salary for newly-qualified teachers is only pound;15,141.

The London police, who have also suffered recruitment problems, are now paid pound;6,000 more than their colleagues outside London. Teachers get an extra pound;2,316 in inner Londo, others less.

Anything less than doubling the present London allowance will have negligible impact on attracting and keeping teachers working in our capital city. The School Teachers Review Body needs to act decisively to prevent this crisis worsening.

Hank Roberts National Union of Teachers amp; Association of Teachers and Lecturers Brent secretary 27 Ridley Road, London NW10

Ray Thyer National Association of Schoolmasters Union of Women Teachers Brent secretary 18 Derwent Crescent Whetstone, London N20

Plus 40 other teacher union officials in London

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