Letters extra: I am not an automaton

25th May 2001 at 01:00

I have just received some feedback from an interview I attended. The reasons given for my failure to get the job are somewhat disheartening. I was informed that, although my interview was "good" andnbsp;"it was a very close thing" I should "perhaps consult the Ofsted Handbook" on what is expected of good teachers and good teaching.

Well, there we are then - the answer we've all (?) been searching for. How to succeed at interview, get that coveted promotion and be a damned good teacher to boot. Utter drivel.

I came into teaching in the mistaken belief that lessons that were enjoyable and stimulating would result in learning. How wrong I was. It now seems I am required to become an automaton, well versed in "Of-speak", never to allow any shred of spontaneity or fun to blight my lessons. Well, if this is indeed so, the question must be asked, why on Earth doesn't Ofsted run our teaching training colleges? Why bother going through a four-year B-Ed, when all I really have to do is read their book?

Can this really be all there is to it? To say I am disillusioned is an understatement. I believed, obviously quite wrongly, that the profession would stand up and speak for those of us who have a simple belief: that children who are happy will learn. It now seems that this is not the case.

Stuart Yates
Alderney, Channel Islandsnbsp;nbsp;nbsp;

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