Tim ManlyTim Manly, Headmaster of Hurst, on politics, Eton, social mobility and the importance of giving.

Timed to coincide with the season of Open Days, the ‘Education Special’ is a staple of the regional, glossy magazine, complete with the obligatory ‘Meet the Head’ interview.

Usually, this means a series of safe questions are emailed over, and the carefully chosen words are returned, after some vetting from the school’s marketing department. And you have an interview that could have been lifted straight from the school’s professional prospectus. In fact, you could quite easily replace the name of the school and the photo with that of another Head Teacher and no-one would be any wiser. This is a great shame, as our Head Teachers, whether from state or independent schools, are worth listening to. All are intellectual, driven and influential. There can be few issues of more importance to any society than education, and our Heads know more about the topic than anyone else.

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