LETTER : Contracts mean selective schools

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Indy Lifestyle Online
Sir: We write as organisations which have been long involved in supporting ways in which parents and schools might be encouraged to work together to help children learn.

We are opposed to proposals in the Education Bill, currently in committee, which will allow admission authorities, either local education authorities or grant-maintained and voluntary school governing bodies, to make a condition of admission to a school that the parent sign a "parental declaration" - a home-school contract.

Parents already have little real choice. Now they could be obliged to sign a contract if their local school is oversubscribed. Since the parent will be obliged to sign the document before the child is even allowed to go to the school the proposal has nothing to do with encouraging home- school partnership, but is, in fact, another form of selection.

We would like to see the Government encouraging parents and schools to work together. These proposals are more likely to create division than partnership and will lead to more litigation.

MARGARET TULLOCH

Campaign for State Education

JANE MARTIN

Action on Governors' Information and Training

MARGARET McGOWAN

Advisory Centre for Education

PAT BALL

Alliance of Parents and Schools

CHRIS DAVIS

National Association for Primary Education

MARGARET MORRISEY

National Confederation of Parent Teacher Associations

ROBIN SIMPSON

National Consumer Council

PAT PETCH

National Governors' Council

London SW20

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