BBC NEWS Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific
BBCi NEWS   SPORT   WEATHER   WORLD SERVICE   A-Z INDEX     

BBC News World Edition
 You are in: UK: Education  
News Front Page
Africa
Americas
Asia-Pacific
Europe
Middle East
South Asia
UK
England
N Ireland
Scotland
Wales
Politics
Education
Business
Entertainment
Science/Nature
Technology
Health
-------------
Talking Point
-------------
Country Profiles
In Depth
-------------
Programmes
-------------
BBC Sport
BBC Weather
SERVICES
-------------
EDITIONS
Tuesday, 16 July, 2002, 13:24 GMT 14:24 UK
Teachers want money without strings
Writing
Teachers are worried about the small print
Teachers' unions have welcomed the spending review's promise of extra cash for schools.

But they have reservations about the strings that will be attached to receiving the money - and say that there must be swifter action on teacher shortages.

And they have cast doubt on whether successful schools will really want to take over their struggling neighbours.


Our members will also be concerned about the number of 'strings' attached to the money. Many will, I'm sure, groan at the thought of yet more changes and yet more bureaucracy

Jean Gemmell, Professional Association of Teachers

Doug McAvoy, leader of the National Union of Teachers, says that the extra funding sends a positive message to teachers.

But he questioned the plans for advanced specialist schools, in which "superheads" could provide leadership for groups of schools. This risked creating divisiveness, he said.

Mr McAvoy also pointed to the most pressing problem facing schools - which was the shortage of teachers.

And he suggested that more tough talk of targets would do nothing to win back teachers leaving the profession.


Teachers want to see a real difference to their working lives next term

Gerald Imison, Association of Teachers and Lecturers

"The secretary of state's vision of superheads and advanced specialist schools is hardly likely to engage the hearts and minds of those teachers contemplating leaving the profession," said Mr McAvoy.

Head teachers said the "jury was out" on the spending review, until it was clear how much extra money schools would actually be receiving.

"The government can concentrate as much as it likes on the radical 'bells and whistles' of its package. But head teachers will judge the chancellor on his ability to make their baseline budgets vastly better than they are at present," said David Hart of the National Association of Head Teachers.

Direct funding

The National Association of Schoolmasters Union of Women Teachers offered a positive response to the extra money - particularly direct funding which by-passed local authorities.

But it also sent the message to the education secretary that teachers are watching carefully to see how their workload will be reduced by the increased budget.

The Association of Teachers and Lecturers welcomed the government's prioritising of education.

But it pointed to the importance of settling the dispute over teachers' workload.

"Teachers want to see a real difference to their working lives next term. The chancellor has delivered on his part of the deal; therefore there can be no excuses from the education secretary," said deputy general secretary, Gerald Imison.

The Professional Association of Teachers offered support for the extra funding.

But general secretary, Jean Gemmell, warned that any plans to raise standards depended on tackling the teacher shortages.

"Our members will also be concerned about the number of 'strings' attached to the money. Many will, I'm sure, groan at the thought of yet more changes and yet more bureaucracy."

Estelle Morris spells out plans for reform.

The government's plans for future spending are published on 15 July

Key stories

Reaction

Background

TALKING POINT
Internet links:


The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites

Links to more Education stories are at the foot of the page.


E-mail this story to a friend

Links to more Education stories

© BBC ^^ Back to top

News Front Page | Africa | Americas | Asia-Pacific | Europe | Middle East |
South Asia | UK | Business | Entertainment | Science/Nature |
Technology | Health | Talking Point | Country Profiles | In Depth |
Programmes