Kent is crossed

19th February 2010 at 00:00

I rarely find myself disagreeing with Mike Kent but the implications of his latest column need to be challenged ("Degree is no teaching guarantee", February 12).

He seems to believe that it does not matter how well educated our schoolteachers are as long as they have the right personal qualities and, secondly, that these qualities can be accurately discerned by the gut instincts of people such as himself within the space of a short interview. Such a method is both amateurish and haphazard.

The response of many teachers to David Cameron's recent suggestion about minimum qualifications - clumsy and half-baked as the latter was - has been to invoke crude stereotypes of the egghead who cannot manage the dinner queue. Appearing not to believe in education is not the best way for teachers to recover the professional autonomy that successive governments have taken away.

Michael Pyke, Spokesman, Campaign for State Education, Staffordshire.

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