Letter: Teachers' merit pay

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The Independent Culture
Sir: Your two correspondents (12 April) responding to your leader "Good teachers deserve to be paid more" raise perfectly legitimate questions.

The answer to D W McKaigue, questioning how a special needs teacher for severely handicapped children can be compared with a colleague who is in charge of bright A-level students, is surely through judging the skills and qualities they bring to their work. They are quite different but open equally to a positive appraisal which would enable both of them to move through the threshold.

John Scholfield quite rightly draws attention to the budgetary considerations which militate against the appointment of the best person for the job and all too often end up in the youngest and cheapest teacher being appointed. This is why NASUWT has consistently argued that the current rigid formula funding under local management of schools cannot accommodate any genuine system of merit pay whatsoever.

NIGEL de GRUCHY

General Secretary

NASUWT

London WC2

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