LETTER:Teachers not solely to blame for poor lessons

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The Independent Online
From Mr Nigel de Gruchy

Sir: It appears a trifle contradictory for David Aaronovitch ("Two heads who mark our schools", 6 February) to accuse me of blaming "anything and anybody" but teachers themselves for problems in schools, just after quoting my list of various causes, including "inappropriate teaching methods". What could be clearer than that?

He seems to have overlooked the very same press statement from which he quotes, in which I said:

It is wrong and simplistic to blame the 25 per cent failing exclusively on teachers.

clearly implying that teachers should shoulder their fair share of the blame.

Mr Aaronovitch then went on to say that Chris Woodhead had "no time for such talk". I heard Mr Woodhead say on BBC's Newsnight (5 February):

I agree with Nigel de Gruchy of the NAS/UWT that it is simplistic only to blame teachers.

Yours faithfully,

Nigel de Gruchy

General Secretary


London, WC2

6 January