The joys of mentoring

3rd May 1996 at 01:00
Margaret Maden is right that the opportunities for successful subject leaders to move on to disseminate good practice are fewer ( TES, April 19). However, I am surprised she did not mention the opportunities offered by mentoring initial teacher trainees. As someone at present finishing a master's research on mentoring, and actually mentoring an Open University student in French, I have felt a great deal of satisfaction in passing on skills and knowledge.

If that mentorship process is incorporated within a whole-school profession development policy, such teachers can also help and inspire nearly qualified and less experienced teachers within the school. Headteachers and senior managers do however, need to see mentorship not just as an opportunity for some welcome financial input to the school, but equally as an opportunity for good staff to disseminate their good practice to less-experienced staff or trainees.

JENNY SYMIEN Head of modern languages Mark Rutherford school Bedford

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