When Gillian Shephard succeeded to her new post I - with many colleagues - breathed a sigh of relief: "At last, someone in the job who has real insight. " Some hope!
When questioned recently on Radio 4, Mrs Shephard expressed the view that teaching was adequately remunerated when taking into account the delights of the work. Well, Mrs Shephard, if it is so delightful why did you for one (and your husband for two) leave the classroom with such haste?
On the same day, You and Yours, also on Radio 4, reviewed calls received on the topics featured during the week. The researcher responding to the programme on stress seemed surprised by the calls made by one group - teachers! There were considerable numbers who were experiencing stress, and many who had left the profession as a result.
Oh, for those classroom halcyon days - I think not, Mrs Shephard.
RICHARD WALLAGE 102 Lynn Road Terrington St Clement King's Lynn, Norfolk