AAA Press release: For immediate release
Gove has much to contemplate as he visits Gloucester Academy on 20th Sept
Staff at Gloucester Academy are concerned about the management of their school. The AAA was contacted anonymously this week after teachers were told that Head teacher, John Reilly, had ‘stepped down’. This being an academy, they were too frightened to speak out publicly. They believe Reilly was sacked and they have no faith in Prospects their academy sponsor.
This comes as little surprise to those who have followed the story of Prospects. Earlier this year Private Eye exposed the murky business of accountability between DfE and Prospects after they were banned from sponsoring anymore academies. http://www.localschoolsnetwork.org.uk/2013/08/did-schools-minister-overrule-civil-servants-and-allow-sponsor-with-failing-academy-to-expand-asks-private-eye/
But we were told things can only get better! Not quite. This year’s GCSE results show further decline, with only 29% achieving results A* C including Maths and English. This is well below Gove’s floor target.
If it was a community school it would earmarked for academy conversion without delay. But it is an academy. So it is Gove’s responsibility, not the Local Authorities’, to sort this out.
Nor is Gloucester Academy is not the only ‘failing’ academy. Once upon a time we were told that academy status was the government’s key mechanism for school improvement. Apparently it was all about meeting the needs of the most disadvantaged children in society. Gloucester Academy has a good number of disadvantaged children, but Gove’s academy magic dust appears to have done little to change things. These children deserve much better than politician’s photo opportunity.
So as Gove visits on Friday, he needs to answer some questions: What really improves a school? What is he going to do about failing academies? What is he doing about failing sponsors such as Prospects? He should also think about when he will he start listen to professional opinion.
For further information
Contact: Alasdair Smith 0790296701
AAA National Secretary