Parents have a right to be heard

10th August 2001 at 01:00
The article about the Scottish Consumer Council report on independent advice for parents (TESS, August 3) requires some clarification.

The research was conducted by the Scottish Council for Research in Education (SCRE) on our behalf. The findings relayed the views of parents about the availability of independent education advice and their proposed solutions to the lack of availability of independent advice in Scotland. None of the range of concerns and ideas presented in the report came from the Scottish Consumer Council or SCRE.

Some parents thought a designated school board member would be a good idea. The fact that Judith Gillespie of the Scottish Parent Teacher Council thought this proposal was "mince" was too dismissive. Different groups of parents will have different needs and views. The more real evidence we have about these, the better prepared policy-makers will be to address them.

We publish our reports as contributions to the continuing debate about the parental interest in education. As a matter of principle we argue for the range of parental views to be heard and addressed in a constructive manner.

Jackie Welsh Policy manager Scottish Consumer Council Royal Exchange House 100 Queen Street, Glasgow

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