Gong bashing

15th August 1997 at 01:00
Having refused an OBE in 1993 "for services to education" as a comprehensive school head, I have strong views on gongs, Oscars or knighthoods for heads (TES, August 1). Such medieval fripperies as knighthoods would merely give ribald merriment to pupils and staff. Moreover, OBE stands for Obsolete British Emblem. When will we establish a 21st century way of giving honour instead of meretricious, class-ridden "honours" that stand for everything I do not believe in?

I suggest that we celebrate outstanding voluntary workers, with an informed letter of appreciation from the local mayor or council leader followed by a reception where many come together to hear what others have done.

I am running a campaign against the present system of honours. If anyone would like to sign a petition against them, please would they write to me at the address below.

JOHN D ANDERSON OBE (refused)

1 Gillbeck Close Baildon Shipley, West Yorkshire

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