Christine Hancock (Observations, 29 October) should not be seeking to raise nurses' pay to match teachers' pay. My wife is a teacher, and has a new colleague who is an ex-nurse. He says that as a nurse he went to work, did the job and went home.

As a teacher he plans the day before he arrives and takes work home for nights, weekends and holidays. He finds the job exhausting but more rewarding. There is no overtime.

In the early 1970s the average teacher's pay was 36 per cent above the average non-manual wage. Today teachers get around 6.4 per cent more.

Instead of aiming to achieve the teacher's level of pay, the Royal College of Nursing should join teachers' unions to address the issue of how pay in education and health services had been eroded in the past 20 years.

S R Cook