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Is the workforce agreement working?

The TES asked PAT delegates for their views on moves to cut teachers' hours and give a bigger role to assistants...

Roger Taylor, a retired assistant secondary head from East Anglia, now lecturing teaching students for the Open University: "I think the NUT has got it right on this. We should be worried abut it because teachers' jobs are at risk. Because funding is limited, schools will be tempted to use higher-level classroom assistants instead."

Ros Griffiths, a former primary teacher from Portsmouth: "It is enormously patchy. It is working well in some areas but progress is slower in others.

It is not being funded adequately, particularly in small primary schools."

Sandra Webster, a teacher at Wimborne St Giles Church of England first school, Dorset: "I teach in an extremely small school with fewer than 70 pupils and we have tried to implement as much of the agreement as we can.

But we have a part-time secretary and when she is not there, there is no way we can transfer our clerical jobs."

Geraldine Everett, a special needs co-ordinator from Leicester: "It works on paper but in practice where is the money? We have higher-level teaching assistants by name but it is more a status thing to get this qualification because many schools will not be able to pay them anything extra."

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