Red tape bars returner's path

16th March 2001 at 00:00
AS a retiree I await with interest my letter from Mr Blunkett asking me to return. In case he is licking the stamp as I write he should note this little parable.

If I chose to work as a supply teacher for my local authority I would have to fill in a form running to 16 sides. Included is a medical form asking 45 questions, with a request for details, on whether I have suffered from diarrhoea or dysentery (what sort of detail do they want?), whether I wear glasses, contact lenses or a hearing aid; suffer from muscular, bone or joint trouble (after 30 years in teaching!) or eczema nd nail biting (their emphasis, not mine). Among the less bizarre requests are copies of teaching qualifications and degrees, written evidence of my DFEE number and a copy of my birth certificate. I would also have to complete a job application form.

The letter accompanying the forms states that the administration process will take 8 to 12 weeks and is the same for all applicants including previous employees of the authority!

Perhaps Mr Blunkett might like to suggest to local authorities there is no need to be quite so bureaucratic.

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