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LETTER : Child's play

I and my fellow supervisors at our local playgroup do not encourage mothers to "sit round gossiping" ("Guilty of giving him a good time", 28 April). As with most playgroups, we send them home, since our whole ethos is to provide a stimulating and caring environment where children can gain confidence away from carers, as a valuable preparation for school.

Antonia Feuchtwanger's article is typical of the denigration dished out to playgroups. I weary of the implication that the paper, pencils, water, books and sand over which I preside are substandard because the name above the door is "Playgroup" not "Nursery School".

Christine Pearson

Towcester, Northamptonshire