Keep the three tier system

PUBLISHED: 12:06 13 July 2006 | UPDATED: 10:28 06 May 2010

I have three children attending middle and lower schools in Stotfold and Arlesey. I do not share the view of my local councillor John Street and my elected MP Alistair Burt that change to a two tier system is likely to benefit my children I urge all pare

I have three children attending middle and lower schools in Stotfold and Arlesey.

I do not share the view of my local councillor John Street and my elected MP Alistair Burt that change to a two tier system is likely to benefit my children

I urge all parents to lobby their local representatives against this short-sighted and ill-informed proposal. The majority of parents and children do not want change as is evidenced in the consultation. Many of our local schools are out-performing those in the two tier system (Etonbury Middle School outperformed some 150 primary schools in Hertfordshire last year) and our children clearly benefit from early access to specialist facilities and teaching in subjects such as science - 98% of children at Etonbury gained level four or above in last year's KS2 science tests compared to only 86% of children in the rest of the country.

There is little, if any, research evidence to demonstrate that school attainment is linked to school structure, but a wealth of evidence showing that it is linked to strong leadership, good school support and the collection and use of high quality data - all areas of recognised weakness in Bedfordshire's LEA.

There is also evidence to show that schools retaining a three tier system show greater levels of improvement in the long term than those that change to a two tier. Do not let Bedfordshire LEA package up a financial incentive as an educational one. Please make your views known and save our middle schools.

CLARE MORRIS, The Old Church House, High Street, Arlesey

* I have been involved with middle schools almost since their inception initially as a teacher and for the last 12 years of my teaching career as head of a Scottish village school where the age of transfer is higher than in England.

After enjoying 26 years as a teacher I decided to try and make some money because we had a lot of children of our own.

Latterly, many years later I have found it very interesting to return to education as a governor and for the last four and a half years have been the chair of governors at Etonbury.

I am very concerned that in order to try to get their way people who are determined to change the present system have felt it necessary to claim that standards are the only issue and have presented the achievements of middle schools in a very negative way. I could talk at great length on this subject as could many others. However, time is short. If we can influence the council I will be delighted and I would be very grateful if you could publish my letter which states my true position.

ROY ARDEN

* I think there should be a uniform school system nationwide. There is nothing wrong with the two tier system which has been in place some years now. So the middle schools should go.

DEBBIE, St Albans


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