The recent findings of the School Inspectorate make for very disturbing reading regarding sponsored Academies and Free Schools (‘Headteachers campaign for fairer school funding’, WSCT Dec 10 and ‘Propaganda drive for academies’, WSCT, Dec 17).
OFSTED’s official figures clearly show that failing schools are six times more likely to remain ‘inadequate’ if they opt out of Local Education Authority (LEA) control. In other words, a failing school is far more likely to improve if it remains under LEA control.
This runs counter to the current political dogma that conversion to sponsored Academies (or Free Schools) is the only way to improve standards in failing schools.
This has resulted in undermining the role of the local authority in education - in our case West Sussex County Council LEA.
It is up to us to take the politics out of education, for the sake of our children and their future.
RICHARD W. SYMONDS
SCRAM Campaign for Hot School Meals and Playing Fields, Ifield Street, Ifield Village
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