This hire and fire mentality is damaging

13th July 2012 at 01:00

The comment by Mr Gove (at Fasna last week) about "teaching union leaders who deny there is any such thing as a bad teacher who needs to go" is clearly untrue and deeply worrying. I was a member of two teaching unions before retiring in 2009, and in 37 years of teaching never came across a union person who did not accept that poor teachers let the profession down. The most efficient and humane ways to remove them from the classroom were always on the agenda.

However, it was also essential to prevent victimisation, and good schools and colleges always had proper disciplinary and performance procedures to prevent arbitrary behaviour by heads and governors. There is a worrying hire and fire mentality developing among some Conservative leaders - and some poor managers in schools - that can only damage teacher professionalism.

Trevor Fisher, Stafford.

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