The verdict: Teachers

1st June 2001 at 01:00
Pat Dwyer, acting head, West Benton high school, Newcastle:

"Labour has not taken the teacher shortage - the major issue facing schools - seriously enough. A short-term pay-out for recruits is not enough. If we want to keep good teachers we need to give them non-contact time.

The Liberal Democrats honesty in saying they will raise tax to increase education spending is impressive." Verdict on Labour record: 510

Anthony Handley, Coloma Convent girls' school, Croydon, London: "I'm pleased that the proportion of national income spent on education is rising. But Labour have not listened to teachers. The education environment is more stressful without necessarily being more productive. I voted Labour in 1997 but am switching to the Liberal Democrats this time. I and most teachers simply do not trust the Conservatives." 5.510

Louise Robinson, special needs teacher at Livingstone primary, Barnet, London: "I am not ipressed by any of the parties. The next government needs to cut paperwork and treat teachers as professionals. It is obvious it needs to address training. You can't find qualified special needs teachers." 610

Colin Harris, head, Warren Park primary, Hampshire: "Generally things have improved quite substantially. There's definitely more money. There has been a large number of initiatives and many have been very good." 7.510

Selena Cook, Penrhos county primary, Swansea: "It's different for teachers in Wales. A lot that happens in England does not have the same importance here. We always seem to be a year or so behind because of wrangling between the Welsh Assembly and Westminister. I like the literacy strategy. It's not compulsory in Wales but we follow it as closely as we can. But Labour relies too much on our goodwill. It would be nice to have more recognition of the effort we put in." 610

Jon Slater

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