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PUPIL CONTRACT SCHEME FACES CRITICISM

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A government scheme launched yesterday which might see children as young as five being asked to sign contracts prom...
A government scheme launched yesterday which might see children as young as five being asked to sign contracts promising to follow rules on homework and good behaviour has drawn criticism from unions.

The Guardian (p3) reports that the announcement came as David Blunkett, the education secretary, issued national guidance on home-school agreements that will come into force next September, building on the voluntary arrangements that already exist in many areas.

But Doug McAvoy, general secretary of the National Union of Teachers, said the agreements would be 'bureacratic imposition on schools that will interfere with existing home-school arrangements without adding to the support that parents already give to schools'.

Margaret Morrissey, spokeswoman for the National Confederation of Parent Teacher Associations, said: 'There is no way a little child would be able to even understand what such a contract is all about when they are hardly able to read and write. The last thing we should be doing is killing off the enjoyment and fun of learning by imposing formal agreements like this'.
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