Dozens of instances of financial weaknesses including fraud, theft
and a lack of independent oversight have been found in academy trusts
scrutinised by auditors.
The cases are highlighted in findings published today by the Education and Skills Funding Agency.
The findings set out the common themes arising in financial statements submitted by academy trusts for the 2017-18 financial year.
Over the past few weeks, all three candidates for the Labour Party leadership have written in Tes, outlining their ambitions for the English education system.
What is remarkable is that all three adopt an anti-academy position.
More than 60 academy trusts missed an official deadline to file their latest financial statements, figures obtained by Tes reveal.
This comes more than two years after the Education and Skills Funding Agency (ESFA) announced it was taking a “firmer stance” on academy trusts that submit their financial information late.
Stay neutral? The DfE has consistently been at the heart of the problem. The turf war between Ofsted and the academisers has been inevitable for a very long time.
The DfE can’t solve the problem because it’s part of the problem.
Some of the country’s most powerful Dons, on the other hand, do now
control many schools, across vast swathes of the country. The geography
may sometimes appear to be fairly odd, but they are all held together by
the classic close-knit familial tie.
Serious amounts of power and wealth
are involved at the top of this particular “cosa nostra”. The mere
whisper of names like “Reach2”, “The Ark”, “Delta” and “Harris” is
enough to bring some of us out in a cold sweat.
Their websites are laden with thinly disguised menace. The mighty
“Academies Enterprise Trust” refers darkly to a “golden thread that
binds us all together”.
Other formidable families, like “Kemnal” and “United Learning”, openly declare that they “improve the life chances” of their members – with ominous implications for the life chances of any non-members.