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The Independent Online
From Helen Yaxley

Madam: Your article "Revealed: how 10,000 teachers disappeared" (Education, 28 September) demonstrated yet again the consequences of a state education system that is massively underfunded and therefore undervalued.

One questions what real education can be taking place in overcrowded and under-resourced classrooms - surely this is the gradual demise of the right of an education for all.

Schools must act in order to prevent further decline. However, the "remedies" adopted by some schools cited in the article both astounded and appalled me. Surely it is short-sightedness for teachers to work full time and accept part-time earnings in order to "keep the show on the road". Why does the Midlands secondary school illegally teach a class of 52 pupils in a practical session?

It is this type of action that hinders hope of improvement. Next year there will no doubt be further savage cuts because every teacher will be expected to work full time while being paid for a part-time post. If one school can do it ... ? Every practical session will be operating with larger numbers of pupils than had previously been deemed safe.

I agree that something has to be done to demonstrate to all political parties, and particularly to this government, that because of government policies and under-funding, teachers cannot deliver quality education. I do not, however, agree with teachers making the best of a bad job. Until all teachers are prepared to say enough is enough, and stop papering over the cracks, they will continue to be exploited and consequently children will continue to be inadequately educated.

Yours faithfully,