YOUR lead article (TES, January 29) stated, "Around 10 local authorities, including Liverpool and Bradford are further behind the national average than last year."
Your article referred to a comparison between 1997 and 1998 test results in literacy and numeracy at the end of key stage 2: your analysis in relation to the performance in Liverpool is flawed.
In 1997 Liverpool was not involved as a pilot authority in the national numeracy project and results have dipped in comparison with national figures to increase the gap by 1 per cent. But, conversely, in literacy, where Liverpool has been involved in the national literacy pilot there is a narrowing of the gap, reducing from 6.3 per cent in 1997 to 4.6 per cent in 1998.
Your article on page 6 confirms, "of the literacy pilots, Liverpool and Hackney improved their results by more than the national average". The fact is then that, contrary to the impression given by your front-page headline, the gap in performance in literacy between Liverpool schools and the national average has narrowed.
I have no doubt that, with the continuing efforts of highly committed staff and of a supportive council, together with the implementation of the numeracy strategy, Liverpool pupils will increasingly achieve the results of which we know they are capable.
Frank Cogley Director of education The City of Liverpool 14 Sir Thomas Street, Liverpool