We must open our ears to students' voices

25th October 2013 at 01:00

Student voice is a fashionable concept, but ought not to be cast aside as a way to "flatter the young by fawning over their opinions", as suggested by Claire Fox ("Schools have taken student voice too far", TESS, 18 October).

I was a prep-school head for 11 years, during which time I increasingly appreciated that pupils were astute and discerning in judging good teaching at interviews. While it was never the case that school decisions were based purely on the children's say-so, we genuinely respected the views of the school council and saw the involvement of pupils in certain school issues and decisions as a way to strengthen relationships, consolidate mutual respect and develop mature debate and accountability. The voice of the student should not be ignored and derided, but heard and respected.

Julie Robinson, Education and training director, Independent Association of Prep Schools.

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