If 'satisfactory' goes, what's 'good'?

25th November 2011 at 00:00

What are the characteristics of a system where all outputs are "good" ("Never forget: satisfactory won't wash", 18 November)? To maintain that an education system can be adjudged to have no satisfactory schools is an act that reduces them to factories with all the necessary controls required for perfect products and engineered components. In living, breathing systems, while expectations can always remain high, it is dangerous to be seduced by the kind of managerialism that takes our schools down an assembly line to standardisation.

Far better to live with a spirit of exhortation that encompasses relative success than deal in a language that can only in reality confine schools to a life of arid routine.

Frank Newhofer, Oxford.

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