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Who has the right to write the rites, Dr Wright or Dr Smith?

Plain English Campaign has today condemned comments made by a senior university lecturer that bad spelling in student essays should be accepted. Founder Chrissie Maher OBE, described Dr Ken Smith’s article in the Times Higher Education magazine as ‘madness’.

Commenting from the campaign’s headquarters in Derbyshire, Chrissie said “It sickens me to consider we would allow anyone the liberty to destroy our heritage just because they are fed up with seeing it misused. Instead do something about it, deal with the real problem, stop the rot! Put it right from the start. How can we expect children to learn basic spelling and grammar if senior educationalists are saying it doesn’t matter? It’s absolute madness.”

Dr Smith, a lecturer in criminology at Buckinghamshire New University, suggested that students and lecturers should be ‘given a break’ and allow misspellings of words such as ‘judgment’, ‘twelfth’, and ‘embarrassed’.

Plain English Campaign, which fights for clear communication in all public documents, recently criticised the news that spelling mistakes and grammatical errors were resulting in higher marks in Standard Assessment Tests (SATs).
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