What the Headteachers say

8th May 1998 at 01:00
Andrew Macalpine, headteacher, The Compton school, north London: "There should be some parallel with medicine's teaching hospitals. Teacher training has become more focused on practical work, but people running PGCE courses have difficulty finding schools to place their students in. Having teaching schools would help with that. I would consider beacon status, but it would have to be properly funded and not place too much strain on staff."

Mary Saunders, former headteacher, Chamwell school, Gloucester:

"Beacon-school policy must involve local authorities. They have a key role to play if beacon schools are to be effective. Local authorities do professional development and school improvement work and know which schools need to be assisted. They would be best placed to match up the schools that would benefit from help with beacon schools."

Joy West, headteacher, Tubbenden infant school, Orpington, Kent: "I object to the term 'beacon schools', which I believe will be divisive. Beacons shine out in the dark. There are many examples of excellent practice other than our own."

John Latham, headteacher, Rodborough school, Godalming, Surrey: "The scheme badly needs the co-operation of involved education authorities. To have beacon schools with a direct relationship to the Government restructures the whole education system. This is not a realistic way ahead."

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