Headteacher tells parents to ‘do a teacher training course’ in scathing letter after they moaned about home lessons

A HEADTEACHER told parents to ‘do a teacher training course’ if they thought they can do a better job, after receiving ‘critical’ messages about the school’s online lessons. 

Colin Dowland, head of Woodridge Primary school in north London, sent the tongue-in-cheek letter earlier this week, as teachers grappled with home schooling in the lockdown. 

The head sternly reminded parents of the hard work being put in by his staff during this testing time, as he revealed the school had received criticism over their teaching methods. 

He thanked supportive parents, but said: “A number of parents have taken advantage of this new access to send highly critical messages of advice to teachers about how to do their jobs and questioning their training, skills and competence. 

“Can I encourage all those particular parents, who now consider themselves to be educational experts, to sign up for teacher training at their earliest convenience, since there are never enough teachers and I suspect many will be leaving the profession after this year.”

He went on to outline all the different routes into teaching – and even included the UCAS link for grumbling parents. 

Colin continued: “I will also update you if we have any teaching vacancies at Woodridge over the next few weeks, which if such messages continue, I am thoroughly expecting.” 

The letter has since gone viral, after being shared on Twitter, racking up 11,000 likes as people praised Colin’s fierce reaction. 

The head has been applauded for sticking up for teachers during the pandemic, with one person saying: “Amazing! Great to see management stand up for their staff!”

Can I encourage all those particular parents, who now consider themselves to be educational experts, to sign up for teacher training at their earliest convenience

Another wrote: “Wow – that takes some guts to send that out!”

A third thought: “Love it !!!!! I’m saddened that in these times parents aren’t more supportive of teachers who are doing their absolute best under the circumstances. Good for the author of the letter to make a stand.” 

This person commented: “Crikey! You can feel the emotion coming from this head teacher can’t you? He’s made his point very well. It must be so utterly frustrating to have parents criticising his hard working staff. Good on him.”

The school confirmed to Fabulous the letter was genuine, with Colin previously quoted saying humour was a powerful tool to get an important message across. 

Speaking to Times Educational Supplement about the letter, he said: “I have had so many supportive emails from parents since the letter went out, and the truth is parents who are happy with things don’t usually email the school, but they have today.

"I’ve had a deluge of lovely emails from parents thanking us for what we are doing and apologising on behalf of other parents who might have not taken a moment before firing off an email or a message.”

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