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What the teachers say;Union Conference;NASUWT;National Association of Schoolmasters Union of Women Teachers

The TES asked delegates at the NASUWT conference what they thought of education secretary David Blunkett's speech to NUT colleagues in which he exhorted teachers to stop seeing themselves as victims and be positive about the Government's programme.

Ian Moody, Bradford delegate, teacher at Eccleshill North School: "He's reinforcing to parents that teachers are whingers. You can do all the positive talking you want, but at the end of the day it's your actions that prove how serious you are about improving things."

Ruth Reed, supply teacher and south west Surrey delegate: "I thing the general feeling is that he's been somewhat dictatorial and there has been no change from the last government.

"I genuinely believe he was playing to a wider audience. Colleagues are saying if we want better pay we have to be managing our press better. When we have the general public on our side we seem to do very well in the pay stakes."

David Mottley, teacher at Newick C of E primary near Lewes, East Sussex, and secretary of Lewes and Wealdon NASUWT: "This is an attitude David Blunkett has had right from the start. I think he's got a very limited view of the stresses teachers face."

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