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Wrinkles? No - laughter lines

So what do you think is better for the skin - an afternoon with 13-year-olds or a dollop of pound;100 per pot Creme de la Mer? The Teacher Training Agency south of the border is certainly taking a distinctive approach to recruitment, with its new advert suggesting that educating teenagers beats any anti-wrinkle cream. By contrast, the Scottish Executive's drive to attract more teachers which was launched this week (page 12) simply states that teaching in Scotland beats teaching in London. A clearer contrast, perhaps.

To accuse teachers in England who have complained to the Advertising Standards Authority of having a sense of humour bypass is to miss the point. A thorough investigation could be highly entertaining. Should Londoners also troop along behind them, parading their resentment against the suggestion from north of the border that their city is anything other than a splendid place in which to teach?

Of course, all the wiles of the marketing trade have to be deployed to win new recruits and their efforts might even be understood on occasion. The best adverts for teaching, however, are teachers themselves. The more unions talk down the job, the more people might be content to reach for the anti-wrinkle cream - if it works.

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