Sahlberg started by outlining how he thinks Finland have got to a stage where they rank consistently highly in the PISA tables, a worldwide study by the OECD of the scholastic performance of 15 year-olds internationally.
Finland, he says, aims to provide a great school for each and every child. Private schools were dismantled in 1972, and children simply go to their nearest school. There is no competition between schools, no league tables, no inspectorate and no standardised testing.
Since the very well supported strike action on 23rd May, Copland Community School staff in Wembley have set up an action group. On Thursday 13th June at a lively parents meeting at the school parents decided to also set up an action group. They will be coordinating jointly to continue their opposition to the imposition of an Interim Executive Board (IEB) and a forced academy.
“After hearing about the OFSTED report (Easter 2013) some parents were baffled – several things did not add up.
Particularly, why should the school be given a rating of ‘inadequate overall’ when most of what the report had to say was positive?
We did a little research, and soon came up with some very interesting information…. It looks like Abbey Meadows may be caught up with a political decision to convert as many large schools as possible to Academy status – by force if necessary.
Having done more research, we are convinced that there are no signficant benefits in Abbey Meadows becoming an Academy, and many likely disadvantages (particularly lower teacher morale, less accountability and diversion of funds). Simply put, we do not feel that it is being done in the interests of our children, but for political motives. We have put this site together to help inform parents of what we understand is going on.”
“While sponsored academies are, by definition, schools that have replaced struggling predecessors, the government has been quick to portray them as the cure for all the UK’s educational ills.
Indeed, last month education secretary Michael Gove claimed that “amazing things have been, and are being, achieved by the academies movement”.
But the Association of Teachers and Lecturers (ATL) union has uncovered some statistics that, it says, could well disprove this.”
Post from Stephen Exley in the TES. The AAA does not accept that academies simply replace struggling schools. Many schools feel that they have to convert before they are forced.