Don't train 'em, just get 'em out

August 2, 1996

Anna Tobin (THES, July 26) highlights a pressing problem in higher education: the inability of some academics to teach.

If the lack of a teaching qualification is the problem, why are there so many useless teachers in our schools? The distinction which she offers is clear: it is easier to get rid of schoolteachers for bad teaching than it is to get rid of academics for the same shortcoming.

What are required are structures for the removal of poor university teachers, not teacher training which, in the primary and secondary sectors of education patently does little or nothing to weed out the "useless" ones.

ALAN MacDONALD Edinburgh, EH7 5NB

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