John McLellan: Schools should be allowed to ignore teaching council

Ideally, teachers should actually like children
Ideally, teachers should actually like children
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Given Trinity High School has repeatedly failed to fill its maths vacancies, with similar problems at Portobello High, there is something wrong when an experienced English maths teacher can have her appointment by an Edinburgh school blocked by the General Teaching Council for Scotland.

This smacks not of the maintenance of high standards but of protectionism, which harms the teacher, the school and the pupils.

Most of us will have anecdotal evidence of dreadful teachers either from our own school days or those of our kids, and what matters is not so much the approval of the GTCS but whether the teacher can hold the attention of a class and actually likes children.

The GTCS apparently doesn’t take experience or track record into account, so in Education Secretary John Swinney’s plans to give head teachers the power to recruit their own staff, maybe that should also include the autonomy to tell the GTCS to shove their rules where the chalk don’t write.