Incomplete not failed

August 11, 2006

The analysis of Training and Development Agency data, undertaken at Buckingham University ("Over 15% of trainee teachers founder", August 4), appears to be based on a fundamental misunderstanding of the data. It fails to take account of the fact that UK teacher-training students have to complete Professional Standards Tests to pass their programmes and to be awarded Qualified Teacher Status.

These skills tests can be taken up to five years after students complete the formal part of their programme. This means that students are not registered as having completed - this is not the same as failing.

Nirmala Rao
Goldsmiths, University of London

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