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Thursday, 1 October 2009
Teacher numbers are a serious miscalculation
I heard about a vacancy for a primary school teaching post in North Lanarkshire that attracted five hundred and six applications. Five hundred and six - for one job! Yet record numbers of students are still being recruited to follow them, even though there are currently a thousand less teachers employed in Scotland than in 2007.
Today's teachers have the opportunity to make a huge difference - maybe especially to the lives of disadvantaged children in Scotland - but they can't do it if they don't have a job. This debate is not just a matter of statistics or numbers - it's about changing the world by getting these well trained and committed teachers together with the children who need to be inspired.
Jesus said 'the last will be first' and set the bar as to how we treat what he called 'the little ones'. What he didn't do was fight about how many go here or can't go there! He just knew that good teaching changes lives. The trouble is that chance for that change to happen is being restricted and unless that changes we will all be poorer.