Ex-Ofsted head: Teachers should be prepared to ‘sacrifice their lives’ 6 months ago

Ex-Ofsted head: Teachers should be prepared to ‘sacrifice their lives’

Sir Michael Wilshaw compared teachers to healthcare workers

The former head of Ofsted has said that teachers should have a "similar commitment" to healthcare workers during the Coivd-19 pandemic, some of who "sacrificed their lives."

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Speaking on BBC Newsnight, Sir Michael Wilshaw said that there will need to be "a pulling together" when children return to schools in England next month.

When asked about closing the gap between pupils from deprived backgrounds and other students, which has only been exacerbated by the closure of schools, Wilshaw replied: "It will be closed if there is a real commitment and that is why there has to be a pulling together."

"You have to compare this to the medical emergency over the last year and the commitment on the part of medical professionals and nurses and doctors."

"They’ve gone the extra mile at great cost to themselves at great cost to themselves and their families, their health – they have sacrificed their lives in some cases. We need a similar commitment from the teaching profession over the next academic year."

Joint general secretary of the National Education Union Dr Mary Bousted hit back Wilshaw, saying that teachers "already go way beyond the extra mile".

"The point is, the most disadvantaged children are disproportionately congregated in the most disadvantaged schools," said Dr Bousted.

"The teachers and the support staff who work there already go way beyond the extra mile, with very little help from Ofsted, to support those children."

According to the government's roadmap out of Coivd lockdown, all children and students will return to face to face education in schools and college on March 8th.