The ArgusTalking Point: Do you agree with academies? (From The Argus)

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Talking Point: Do you agree with academies?

Hove Park School governors have voted in favour of becoming an academy.

Do you agree with academies?

Comments (14)

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8:55am Wed 2 Apr 14

BURIRAM says...

No
No BURIRAM
  • Score: 5

9:03am Wed 2 Apr 14

utternonsense says...

Nope
Nope utternonsense
  • Score: 4

9:13am Wed 2 Apr 14

Eugenius says...

No
No Eugenius
  • Score: 4

9:32am Wed 2 Apr 14

pwlr1966 says...

No
No pwlr1966
  • Score: 4

9:43am Wed 2 Apr 14

Andy R says...

No.

But the HPS Governors have NOT voted "in favour of becoming an academy".
No. But the HPS Governors have NOT voted "in favour of becoming an academy". Andy R
  • Score: 2

10:07am Wed 2 Apr 14

whatone says...

Given that those affected aren't allowed a vote on this, how about the Argus runs a poll?
Given that those affected aren't allowed a vote on this, how about the Argus runs a poll? whatone
  • Score: 5

10:12am Wed 2 Apr 14

Baffled of Brighton says...

Not really, and they should all be secular
Not really, and they should all be secular Baffled of Brighton
  • Score: 1

10:59am Wed 2 Apr 14

andrewedmondson says...

No.

Academies were introduced by the Labour government as a way of turning around failing schools.

This government has turned Academies the goal of education, as exemplified by this successful school converting to an academy.

In the name of localism and choice, the government has turned over local council-controlled schools to the private governing bodies of academies and free schools. They complement the existing private school system from where most MPs hail, creating the fragmented and divisive education system we now have.

Those schools that do not convert to academies are in a sort of limbo, under resourced by the local authority and designated by self-interested parents as sink schools.

But if educational standards improve as a result, surely this is all worthwhile? Well, standards haven't improved despite the colossal amount of money spent so far. Academies perform no better than maintained schools, teachers are demoralised by having their pay and conditions lowered, religious schools are increasing in proportion and able to lock in their religious discrimination into new contracts.

As for choice, the government is pressing on with their drive for more religious schools, often giving local communities no choice. Religious organisations now control at least 34% of schools. We don't know how many schools have the new designation "with religious ethos" because the government hasn't kept any records! And the C of E has announced that it aims to take over another 200 secondary schools.

There are two aspects of the academy system: investment and independence. Build a new school and give them lots of money (at the expense of other local schools) and you are bound to improve morale and create an attractive schools for parents to fight to get into. Give the school independence from oversight of the local authority and you lower morale of teachers and potentially allow the investment to be wasted and a generation of children to be served poorly. Combine this with the evangelistic zeal of controlling organisations and you have an educational disaster. Just look at the number of failed academies.
No. Academies were introduced by the Labour government as a way of turning around failing schools. This government has turned Academies the goal of education, as exemplified by this successful school converting to an academy. In the name of localism and choice, the government has turned over local council-controlled schools to the private governing bodies of academies and free schools. They complement the existing private school system from where most MPs hail, creating the fragmented and divisive education system we now have. Those schools that do not convert to academies are in a sort of limbo, under resourced by the local authority and designated by self-interested parents as sink schools. But if educational standards improve as a result, surely this is all worthwhile? Well, standards haven't improved despite the colossal amount of money spent so far. Academies perform no better than maintained schools, teachers are demoralised by having their pay and conditions lowered, religious schools are increasing in proportion and able to lock in their religious discrimination into new contracts. As for choice, the government is pressing on with their drive for more religious schools, often giving local communities no choice. Religious organisations now control at least 34% of schools. We don't know how many schools have the new designation "with religious ethos" because the government hasn't kept any records! And the C of E has announced that it aims to take over another 200 secondary schools. There are two aspects of the academy system: investment and independence. Build a new school and give them lots of money (at the expense of other local schools) and you are bound to improve morale and create an attractive schools for parents to fight to get into. Give the school independence from oversight of the local authority and you lower morale of teachers and potentially allow the investment to be wasted and a generation of children to be served poorly. Combine this with the evangelistic zeal of controlling organisations and you have an educational disaster. Just look at the number of failed academies. andrewedmondson
  • Score: 5

2:21pm Wed 2 Apr 14

Hove person says...

No
No Hove person
  • Score: 1

12:04am Thu 3 Apr 14

RK_Brighton says...

No.

Especially if they are 'sponsored' by a private company or 'chain'.
No. Especially if they are 'sponsored' by a private company or 'chain'. RK_Brighton
  • Score: 1

7:32am Thu 3 Apr 14

Heterodox says...

No. In Bristol an outstanding LA school converted to academy and is now in a complete mess - Hove Park is a good school let's keep it that way!
No. In Bristol an outstanding LA school converted to academy and is now in a complete mess - Hove Park is a good school let's keep it that way! Heterodox
  • Score: 2

7:34am Thu 3 Apr 14

Heterodox says...

Last post - school is actually in Bath but principle is the same.
Last post - school is actually in Bath but principle is the same. Heterodox
  • Score: 0

10:18am Fri 4 Apr 14

Tel Scoomer says...

The sentence at the start of this article is wrong. Hove Park School governors have not voted in favour of becoming an academy. They have voted to consult parents and carers, pupils and staff - and prospective parents, carers and pupils - about whether the school should become an academy.
The council no longer really controls schools so there would be little to lose by becoming an academy in terms of oversight.
If the Conservatives are re-elected, expect all schools to become academies, increasingly in chains known as multi-academy trusts. It will probably also happen even if Labour gets in.
Schools that become academies now will at least have more of a chance to shape their own futures fort he benefit of students and staff. Those left behind are likely to end up being forced to fit into someone else's multi-academy trust.
The question probably ought to be: "Are parents, staff and students willing to put the school's impressive recent progress at risk? Or would they like to have a better chance of shaping their own future?"
The anti-academy brigade are dinosaurs, happy to hold back our children for ideological reasons.
My biggest reservation is around accountability and transparency, given that they are funded from our taxes. All schools should have to publish an annual report and accounts along prescribed lines, just like companies and charities. And they should be required to hold an open AGM. These measures would provide at least some assurance in the necessary checks and balances that should exist in every responsible organisation.
The sentence at the start of this article is wrong. Hove Park School governors have not voted in favour of becoming an academy. They have voted to consult parents and carers, pupils and staff - and prospective parents, carers and pupils - about whether the school should become an academy. The council no longer really controls schools so there would be little to lose by becoming an academy in terms of oversight. If the Conservatives are re-elected, expect all schools to become academies, increasingly in chains known as multi-academy trusts. It will probably also happen even if Labour gets in. Schools that become academies now will at least have more of a chance to shape their own futures fort he benefit of students and staff. Those left behind are likely to end up being forced to fit into someone else's multi-academy trust. The question probably ought to be: "Are parents, staff and students willing to put the school's impressive recent progress at risk? Or would they like to have a better chance of shaping their own future?" The anti-academy brigade are dinosaurs, happy to hold back our children for ideological reasons. My biggest reservation is around accountability and transparency, given that they are funded from our taxes. All schools should have to publish an annual report and accounts along prescribed lines, just like companies and charities. And they should be required to hold an open AGM. These measures would provide at least some assurance in the necessary checks and balances that should exist in every responsible organisation. Tel Scoomer
  • Score: -1

12:42pm Fri 4 Apr 14

andrewedmondson says...

According to the DfE, "The local authority (LA) will retain full responsibility for overseeing the performance and financial arrangements of its maintained schools." This is not the case for academies.

I fail to see why parents at a successful school would want to risk becoming an academy.

We have to remember the initial reason for creating academies, i.e. to turn around failing schools in deprived areas. The ideology was not to replace the maintained education system with centrally run independent schools.

I disagreed with the initial academy program because it immediately created another form of division, with an elitist name too. And now we have so-called free schools, with widely varying standards and sometimes run by dubious organisations.

I would have preferred to see the government spend the same amount of money improving the state school system, introducing more accountability and professional management. It's so easy to scrap everything and start again ... and again ... and again. Good for politicians, bad for the tax payer.
According to the DfE, "The local authority (LA) will retain full responsibility for overseeing the performance and financial arrangements of its maintained schools." This is not the case for academies. I fail to see why parents at a successful school would want to risk becoming an academy. We have to remember the initial reason for creating academies, i.e. to turn around failing schools in deprived areas. The ideology was not to replace the maintained education system with centrally run independent schools. I disagreed with the initial academy program because it immediately created another form of division, with an elitist name too. And now we have so-called free schools, with widely varying standards and sometimes run by dubious organisations. I would have preferred to see the government spend the same amount of money improving the state school system, introducing more accountability and professional management. It's so easy to scrap everything and start again ... and again ... and again. Good for politicians, bad for the tax payer. andrewedmondson
  • Score: 1

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