The headquarters of the Walton/Walmart billionaires is in
Bentonville, Arkansas, so it is not surprising that the Walton Family
Foundation and the members of the family (net worth: $100 billion) have
decided to privatize the public schools of Arkansas.
Arkansas is a poor state. It doesn’t have an abundance of private
schools that are as good as its underfunded public schools but the
Waltons want every child to have a voucher or a charter school to
Legislators are easy to buy in a poor state. The Waltons own quite a few.
The Arkansas Education Association did the research and described the empire that the Waltons have constructed in service to their goal of owning and privatizing the public schools of Arkansas. In the Walton plan, there will be no “public schools,” only privately managed charter schools and vouchers for religious schools.
The majority of leaders and headteachers in multi-academy trusts say
they do not get enough support from the Department for Education and
their regional schools commissioners (RSCs), a new survey has revealed.
The research found that 62 per cent of school leaders felt they needed more DfE support to be an effective trust.
And more than half also said they wanted more backing from RSCs.
The number of schools choosing to become academies has slumped dramatically in the past 12 months, continuing a strongly downward trend which started two years ago, Education Uncovered can reveal.
In the academic year 2018-19 the number of applications to the Department for Education from local authority schools volunteering to take on academy status was less than half what it had been the previous year, this website’s exclusive analysis of official government data shows.
And academy application numbers are now barely a third of what they were at their peak in 2016-17, the statistics show. They suggest academisation may be moving towards a ceiling in the primary sector unless there is a change of direction for the policy.
Academies accounted for 39 of the 41 schools with the highest exclusion rates. The other two were run by their local authority.
An English state school has suspended more than half its pupils in a single year for the first time on record, Guardian analysis has found, as national exclusion rates continue to rise.
Red House academy in Sunderland, run by the Northern Education Trust, an academy chain, recorded the highest fixed-term exclusion rate in England in the 2017-18 academic year. It handed at least one fixed-term exclusion to 254 pupils, just over half the total attending the school.
Forty-one schools excluded more than one in five pupils, or roughly 10 times the national rate of 2.3%. Two academy chains – Outwood Grange Academies Trust and the Northern Education Trust – dominated that list with nine and seven of their schools featuring respectively.
A raft of dramatic and controversial education measures including billions of pounds in new funding, a crackdown on student behaviour and a further wave of free schools are to be announced by the government within days, according to a confidential briefing paper seen by the Guardian.