Forget the facelift, go for an overhaul;Letter

12th June 1998 at 01:00
I am continually amazed at the quick-fix ideas that are being suggested to improve the status and morale of teachers. Reading the TES front-page story on teachers' awards (May 29) was the latest example: yet more money set aside for superficial measures. Education needs a complete overhaul, not a face-lift.

How will the merits of good teachers be detected anyway? Perhaps the league tables could be consulted and awards given to those who produce good results for their school, irrespective of any notion of value added.

Maybe those whom inspectors have branded "more than satisfactory" or "excellent" stand a chance - or those who have the biggest fan club or who have shown some action beyond the call of duty. Whatever criteria are eventually decided upon, what will be achieved? Will the vague hope of a teacher Oscar really attract graduates? In the same way that cinema advertising campaigns have merely made teachers in the audience glow gently with a sense of some self-worth, the national award ceremony for good teachers may do little else than irk many unrecognised good teachers and spend a lot of money in doing so.

Helen Glasspoole

St Margaret's Road, Twickenham, London

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