2 JUNE 1961, Page 13

3. LOOK—THIS IS YOU SIR,—Mr. Charles Brand is not only

smug and parochial; he is impertinent. In his second article he quotes from my previous letter to the Spectator in order deliberately to misunderstand me. I only linked new cars with books because Mr. Brand him- self referred to the teacher's need for both. Books as a status symbol is a fascinating idea, but one I had not thought of.

But even if one ignores the cheap jibes: 'nol a question of pouring out knowledge' (just keeping them quiet); 'nine-to-half-past-three,' Mr. Brand's arrogance is really terrifying. I can only imagine that his whole experience of life has been academic. The howl of protest evoked by his first article did not come because we who `do a necessary job under great difficulties' in secondary modern schoOls misunderstood him, but because we understood him so well. It is a question of proportion. It may be worrying if three brilliant lads who were destined for Oxbridge have to make do with Redbrick; it could be sad if Mr. Brand, who struggles so hard to keep the flag of great learning flying, had to strike his colours; but it would be disastrous if 80 per cent. of the population became permanently submerged in a sea of mediocrity because wage differentials encouraged people with good qualifica- tions (nearly half my school colleagues have degrees) to desert other schools for the sake of grammar school sixths.

MI teachers do not have the same task—although I cannot believe Mr. Brand to be serious when he svrites that grammar school staffs need no training in teaching method—but the work all do is vitally important. Without infant and primary school teachers there would be no grammar school pupils at all.—Yours faithfully,


/2 Litiledale Close, Bracknell, Berks