Northern lights out

10th March 2006 at 00:00
And they say Tony Blair's education reforms stop at the border. Anyone who wants to see a virtual "commissioning" local authority may want to look at Aberdeen City, where half the council's education officials are leaving, either at the end of this month or during the summer.

On their way out of the new corporate structure are leading officials Charles Muir, Alex Hunter, Ann Landels and Jean Bell. Former director John Stodter has already taken his package and run.

As senior staff take their "Paterson shilling" (so-called because of the reforms of council chief executive, Douglas Paterson, once education director in Grampian), schools are being asked collectively to cough up pound;1 million and hand it back to the cash-strapped centre.

This is obviously going down well with the troops, who have complained bitterly about the lack of education experience in the top management tiers.

But one footsoldier saw the bright side. "There's nobody to ask, but that might be an advantage. At least we'll get a couple of years of peace and quiet."

Log-in as an existing print or digital subscriber

Forgotten your subscriber ID?


To access this content and the full TES archive, subscribe now.

View subscriber offers


Get TES online and delivered to your door – for less than the price of a coffee

Save 33% off the cover price with this great subscription offer. Every copy delivered to your door by first-class post, plus full access to TES online and the TES app for just £1.90 per week.
Subscribers also enjoy a range of fantastic offers and benefits worth over £270:

  • Discounts off TES Institute courses
  • Access over 200,000 articles in the TES online archive
  • Free Tastecard membership worth £79.99
  • Discounts with Zipcar,, Virgin Wines and other partners
Order your low-cost subscription today