‘Academies’ is not the answer for our schools

As a former secondary school teacher and a current member of the teachers’ union ATL, I am increasingly concerned about the education fuelling the future of our children and their parents.

Parents know their children best – they instinctively know what their children are best at and what their challenges are. Parental choice used to be the order of the day, the choice to send their child to the school that best suits the child, but not now.

Now, under the current government, choice only comes with financial security. Academy status has been enticed by initial cash investment, and recently by the government’s Condition and Improvement Fund (CIF), which is fine for those people who want academies but most of us don’t. Schools to their credit have resisted the movement to change all school to academies.

The low number of schools now under LEA management and protection are claimed by school’s minister Nick Gibb MP to be the reason for the policy of – all schools have to become an academy.

He said: “A number of local authorities now had so few schools under their oversight that it is impossible for them to have the resources to look after them”.

Isn’t that the expected outcome of the Conservative government’s policy? As parents and grandparents we must support our children to get the most appropriate education to fit them for their future. A multi-academy trust is not necessarily the answer.

Hazel Thorpe

(Former SENco)

Rose Cottage

High Street, Tarring

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