Lost expertise of old inspectors

13th June 2003 at 01:00
Congratulations to David Sherlock ("Release the flow of progress and leave them smiling", TES, May 23) on his lucid restatement of the traditional values of inspectorates. There has been little charting of the history of inspectorates pre-Ofsted (and pre-Further Education Funding Council and Adult Learning Inspectorate). I can refer him to Stuart Mclure's An Inspector Calls, which is the nearest to an authoritative history.

It shows what a stock of experience, knowledge and skills there was in the 1970s and 1980s and how close HMI and local inspectorates came to being a comprehensive national body, only to be sidelined.

Francis Verity

1 Wimbledon Park Road

Southsea, Portsmouth

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