Cost of Converting Schools into Academies

Commenting on research by the Local Government Association (LGA) which shows  that more than £22m has been spent by councils to pay the costs of schools to convert to academies, Christine Blower, General Secretary of the National Union of Teachers, the largest teachers’ union, said:

“It has always been perfectly clear that for many schools the attraction of becoming an academy was financial and nothing to do with supposed additional ‘autonomy’ or education standards. Barely a week goes by without some tale of malpractice or inadequate standards in academies and free schools. It is quite obvious that this expensive and disruptive experiment has to stop.

“The money that local authorities are having to spend on picking up the deficits run up by some schools, who then are able to walk away from their debts and become academies, leaving the council to foot the bill, would be far better spent on supporting existing schools. Mums, Dads, carers and their children are being misled and let down by this Government and its steadfast refusal to accept the failure of the academy and free school project.

“Academies and free schools are no guarantee of high education standards and due to their isolation often result in the exact opposite. It is high time we saw a return of these schools to the oversight of their local authority. Removing this democratic and accountable middle-tier has proved to be a disaster.”

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