Sunday, August 24, 2008

More Schools To Be Branded 'Failures'

Government moves to privatise state schools and hand them over to undemocratic business backers, are revealed in today's Sunday Times, with plans for a huge expansion of the flagging academies programme.

Last week's GCSE results showed, once again, how schools are being forced to play the education system and fight government obsession with league tables, to produce record GCSE results, to stave off closure and meet unrealistic targets. 

The government has already earmarked 638 schools in England as failures under the National Challenge programme. They face funding cuts and a switch to the academy programme, as the government hands them over to the vast army of education consultants and bureaucrats in privately managed academies.

Now the Sunday Times reports that Blairite academies architect, schools minister, Lord Adonis, is planning an expansion of the academies beyond the current target of 400.

Teaching unions and true members of the Labour Party will be incensed by the idea of a further 'focus on failure and closure' to switch to academies and see it as another example of the Blairite stranglehold on the New Labour government. 

Adonis, is quoted as saying: “My motto as an ardent Blairite is, in the master’s words, what matters is what works ... We will make a political decision in due course on where we go beyond 400. On the basis of the results and the demand, the only issue is how far. We have 100 opening in 2010.”

So just who is the royal 'we' that Adonis refers to? Certainly not the non-Blairites in the government or Labour Party, the teaching unions or the parents who have to put up with the hype and spin of the shallow academies. 

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