Re Trevor Jones’s letter (Creativity is the key to the arts and the sciences, 24 October), aged nine, I and one other pupil were sent off by our teacher in our state primary school to “write a novel” because he presumably observed we were ahead of the class in our English lessons. I don’t recall what my peer wrote but my effort, “The Door Into Time”, still has echoes in several of my 10 novels to date. Can you imagine any primary school teacher of year 5, with Sats looming and Ofsted breathing down their neck, feeling free to do that today?
Your editorial (19 October) rightly calls for prioritising creativity in education. However, creativity should not just be seen as a quality found in the arts. Creativity can and should be an essential element in all areas of the curriculum. This was the key message of the Creative Partnerships project, promoted by the Labour government and, unsurprisingly, closed down by David Cameron and Co.
Dr Trevor Millum
Ex-director, National Association for the Teaching of English
I laughed all the way through Grace Dent’s apologia for employing a cleaner (Weekend, 26 October) while nodding enthusiastically in agreement. However, one phrase set my NHS teeth on edge. She describes herself, I hope ironically, as “working class made good”. Until we stop devaluing working-class culture, and eradicate the notion that there is an upward step between the working and middle classes, we will always suffer from the phenomenon of Eton-educated leaders.
Advice to a worried young vegan friend going off to university: “When cooking for yourself, eat vegan. When eating out, vegan/vegetarian. When invited to someone’s house, eat whatever’s offered.” Not adopting a label means you can help the environment as much as you are reasonably able, without guilt or challenge.(The war on vegans, Long read, 25 October)
If we have a general election on 12 December (Report, 25 October) does this mean we will know the results on Friday the 13th?
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