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Union attuned to TV drama

BROADCAST THIS week on Teachers TV, The Staffroom Monologues were probably the most moving and funny programmes yet shown on the channel.

This was partly because they were entirely written by teachers, and partly because the channel's normal diet of professional development tips is rarely side-splitting.

But there was one curious detail about the teachers who won the competition and wrote scripts for the series, with assistance from a professional screenwriter.

Three of the four were members of the National Union of Teachers. And the programme's sponsor was none other than the NUT.

The judges insist they did not know the connection, which we believe. So how did it happen?

A beaming Steve Sinnot, the NUT general secretary, claimed that his union's members were just naturally more attuned to drama.

He added that this reflected his own experience. As a schoolboy in Liverpool he was taught by none other than Willy Russell, who went on to write the musical Blood Brothers and the film Educating Rita.

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