THE SARCASTIC Diary piece about Nottingham University was incorrect in two respects. The "man in charge" is not Professor David Hopkins. The university co-ordinates the National SCITT in Outstanding Primary Schools, but it is run by a representative group of headteachers.
It is not true either that the Office for Standards in Education report on the course was "less than glowing". In fact the inspectors concluded that the programme has made a very promising start. They reported, for example, that the major responsibility which schools have for the training is well-placed, that in its first year the partnership has been successful in recruiting candidates of good academic quality, and that the school-based training offers significant benefits to the trainees because they are able to observe and work alongside many good teachers who readily share their skills and expertise. Overall the inspectors judged the trainees' planning, teaching and classroom management skills to be good, and sometimes outstanding.
The Teacher Training Agency response to the inspection confirms that "the report indicates that the provision for primary initial teacher training is good overall".
Dr MJ Coles Academic manager The National SCITT in Outstanding Primary Schools University of Nottingham