Letter: New man at the BBC

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The Independent Culture
Letter: New man at the BBC

Sir: Grey Dyke's urgent and most important job is to reinstate children's radio.

It is a national scandal that the public service provider no longer serves citizens under 15 years of age via this unique and valuable medium. Quite apart from children having a right of access to the nation's airwaves, daily free-to-air radio, especially for under-eights, would quickly prove to be the most cost-effective facility in our education tool-box.

Twenty per cent of Britain's pre-school children suffer language delay and numbers climb to an appalling 40 per cent in some inner-city areas. Teachers and parents complain that children don't listen, won't concentrate and can't sit still. Schools and local authorities are increasingly pessimistic about reaching the Government's targets for maths and reading for 2002. Music and drama have been cut back in schools. A high proportion of young offenders are illiterate as are a high percentage of long-term prisoners. One in five of Britain's children has mental and stress related symptoms.

Radio can help to solve all these problems and give kids loads of fun too.

SUSAN STRANKS

Director, Children 2000

Children's Radio Campaign

Brighton

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