10 May 2013

PLANS to turn two Portsmouth secondary schools into academies have hit a brick wall after sponsorship was withdrawn.
Academies Enterprise Trust (AET) has confirmed it is withdrawing its academy sponsorship of Miltoncross and Priory schools.
Both schools were expected to become AET academies later this year.
But it’s believed the trust has been asked by the Department for Education (DfE) to focus on raising results in its existing academies, rather than taking on more schools.

8 May 2013

Do academies really receive the same amount of funding as non-academy schools?
It is a basic question, and very relevant to any assessment as to whether the coalition government’s best-known education policy is actually succeeding or not.
But, amazingly, we still do not have a categorical answer. It seems very difficult, then, to make any fair comparison between academies and their maintained (non-academy) school peer group. Moreover, as the Commons Public Accounts Committee stressed again in a bitingly critical report (http://bit.ly/17LKJ74) on the Department for Education’s management of the academies programme this week, large sums of public money seem to be being spent on the policy with relatively little transparency.

1 May 2013

A primary school in Queen’s Park which is due to convert to academy status has dumped its proposed sponsor.
Salusbury Primary School, in Salusbury Road, had planned to seek a partnership with Park Federation following a poor Ofsted report – but it has emerged that the school has pulled out of the agreement after a breakdown in relations.
The school currently has a consultant head teacher in place following the departure of the previous head last year.
But it is alleged that PF’s chief executive wanted to draft in a friend as head teacher at SPS, causing unrest within the school.
Under new governmental rules, schools which get poor Oftsed reports are forced by the Department for Education (DfE) to convert to academy status.

31 Jan 2013

More than a million children at academies and free schools could be eating unhealthy lunches because those institutions are exempt from tough food standards, council leaders have warned.
From The Guardian
Academies and free schools which opt out of national regulations are failing in their moral duty to ensure pupils receive healthy dinners, according to the Local Government Association (LGA).

24 Jan 2013

From The Guardian
Higher government GCSE targets mean the number of secondary schools deemed to be failing has almost doubled in a year, something likely to further accelerate the already rapid transformation of schoolsinto academies.
GCSE results for more than 4,000 state and private secondary schools and colleges in England showed that in 195 schools less than 40% of pupils reached the benchmark level of at least five passes at grade C or higher, including English and maths.

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