Workload 'cynicism' under fire

23rd February 1996 at 00:00
The Government is ignoring concerns about workload, Strathclyde's education committee heard last week. Although the region approved a report on reducing workload 10 months ago the Scottish Office has yet to make a formal response.

Drew Morrice, regional convener of the Educational Institute of Scotland and teachers' representative on the committee, accused ministers of "cynicism" in failing to respond while piling new initiatives on schools and demanding improvements in the quality of learning. "The more you constrain budgets, the more pressure on teachers," Mr Morrice said.

External agencies such as the Scottish Vocational Education Council and the Scottish Examination Board had provided "fine-tuning rather than fundamental reassessment of what people are required to do".

The committee was told by David Alexander, senior depute director of education, that school development planning has been "less effective than anticipated" in managing workload. But advances had been made in reducing the bureaucracy involved in recording discipline cases and in reporting to parents. A new format will shortly be sent to schools, simplifying information for parents.

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