Society no longer values teachers, says Lyme head

PUBLISHED: 13:04 22 January 2019 | UPDATED: 13:21 22 January 2019

Headteacher Dr Richard Steward. Picture: Woodroffe School

Headteacher Dr Richard Steward. Picture: Woodroffe School

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Dr Richard Steward says it’s become a feature of the national culture that no one seems to value the profession.

The head of Lyme’s Woodroffe School, who is standing down after criticising parents for lack of support, says teachers are no longer valued by society.

In a letter announcing his plans to take early retirement Dr Richard Steward said: “One of the reasons is due to the lack of support I feel parents have shown the school during my time here.

“I am sorry to say that the positive letters I have received from parents over the years would fit neatly into a small ring binder whereas the letters of complaint would easily fill several large filing cabinets.

“I understand that this is a feature of our national culture nowadays but I would urge you to be supportive as possible of the new leadership team when it takes over from next September.”

Further explaining his comments he said today: “I was concerned to ensure that the new head is fully supported by parents and the community.

“I did point out that during my time in the post, like all headteachers, I have had hundreds of complaints from anxious parents, often about trivial matters, and very few positive comments. I have always found this surprising given the undoubted successes of the school.

“I think this is a feature of our national culture nowadays which seems not to value teachers and the teaching profession in general. Since my letter, however, I have had dozens of letters of support.”


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