Welwyn Hatfield's pupils deserve better

PUBLISHED: 18:50 28 April 2009 | UPDATED: 09:40 27 October 2009

Sir – The letter on education in Welwyn Hatfield (WHT, April 8) has entirely misunderstood the issues raised in respect of our schools. Any open-minded look at the published results for Hertfordshire shows Welwyn Hatfield as consistently below average in

Sir - The letter on education in Welwyn Hatfield (WHT, April 8) has entirely misunderstood the issues raised in respect of our schools.

Any open-minded look at the published results for Hertfordshire shows Welwyn Hatfield as consistently below average in terms of GCSE results. This was acknowledged by a senior education official at the recent meeting of the council's social overview committee.

The question that was raised simply asked WHY? So far no answer has been given apart from "Someone has to be below average".

For a senior Conservative politician to turn this question into a claim of political scaremongering is disgraceful. The key reason for asking the question was that I believe our children, teachers and schools are being let down by the county council.

There must be good reasons why the results for our borough are below the county average. Could one be that around 800 children have to travel out of the area to attend a school of their choice? With that shortage of school places in Welwyn Hatfield you would expect there to be plans to build a new secondary school. As far as I can gather there are none in the near future.

The observation that there are no selective or grammar schools in this area explaining the lower percentages is simply ridiculous. There have not been any for years and the performance back then was far better.

I see little sign that those politicians in charge of the county for so long share my concerns.

Our results are below average. But we have a senior Conservative politician who, instead of demanding better from the county council, is trying to defend the indefensible. Our children, parents and staff deserve better.

Tony Skottowe, Liberal Democrat leader, Welwyn Hatfield.


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