We need a room of our own

10th August 2012 at 01:00

In your article, the head of Cheltenham Bournside School, Allan Foulds, is reported as not being a fan of the staffroom. He stops short of outright abolition in his school, though it seems clear that it must come high on his wish list. And what is his justification for this possible future policy? That at 12.20pm the staffroom is empty, predictably, except for two people, and therefore it is a wasted resource.

Has it occurred to Mr Foulds - and I concede that this is a daring hypothesis that takes a huge conceptual and imaginative leap - that the reason no staff are there is that they are eating their lunch in the canteen? Or, if lunchtime has not yet arrived, that they are in their classrooms doing some teaching?

Rooms do not have to be perpetually full of people to be valuable. I dare say a visit to the toilets would have revealed few staff lingering there, exchanging lesson plans and pleasantries over the soap and water. Does this mean that schools should get rid of staff toilets?

Dr K. T. Maslin, Former head of philosophy, Esher Sixth Form College, Surrey.

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