Sunday, 19 July 2009

'Academy schools' debate: Me and other candidates in the media on this...

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/england/norfolk/8152523.stm

15:27 GMT, Thursday, 16 July 2009 16:27 UK
Debate rages over academy schools

By Nic Rigby
BBC News, Norwich

One of the big education issues for parents in Norwich North - where a
by-election is taking place next week - is that of academy schools.
These schools, originally called city academies when first established
in 2000, are state-funded privately run schools with outside sponsors.

In Norwich, Heartsease High School became the Open Academy in 2008
despite opposition from parents and teachers. Controversy dogged the
process and its first principal has since departed.

Heartsease received extra investment from the government and sponsors
the Bishop of Norwich and Christian businessman Graham Dacre. The
pupils had new uniforms and the school had a new principal Lindsay
Knight.

Everything appeared to set the scene for success, but then at the
beginning of the month parents of pupils at the school received
letters saying Ms Knight would no longer be principal of the school.

Mr Dacre told the BBC that he hoped "the academy could make a positive
impact on the community of Heartsease".
"I hope whoever is elected to represent Norwich North will be a
supporter of academies and will do everything to support it," he said.

But Mike Smith, Norfolk county secretary of the National Union of
Teachers, said he could see very little advantage from a school
becoming an academy as they are still funded by the government, but
lose local accountability.

'Radical new approach'

In December last year a report by the Sutton Trust education charity
found that 13 of 29 academies inspected by Ofsted were rated
satisfactory, with only six rated outstanding.

Labour candidate for Norwich North seat Chris Ostrowski told the BBC
that academies should not be imposed from above.

"We need to make sure everyone is consulted... so everyone comes
together to raise standards," he said.

Chloe Smith, the Conservative candidate, said there had been some
local concern about Heartsease and the departure of the principal.

"We need a radical new approach to getting the supply side of schools
right, so that parents and church groups and charities can set up
schools and run them the way they know is best for their children,"
she said.

Liberal Democrat candidate April Pond said she was not a great
supporter of the government's academy school policy but felt at the
moment they might be the only way to get schools up to acceptable
levels. She said: "My view is that it would have been really nice if
this government had done what it said it would do and bring all
schools to a reasonable standard."

Green candidate Rupert Read criticised the need for academy schools.
"We believe the move to academy schools is wrong. It is privatisation
by stealth. Education should be about giving all our kids the best
chance," he said.

Glenn Tingle, the candidate for the United Kingdom Independence Party,
said academy schools were not the answer for improving education.
He said a return to the 11-plus exam was needed and added: "We would
like a grammar school in every town."

Put An Honest Man Into Parliament candidate Craig Murray said the
academy schemes can give "undue influence over children to people
motivated by peculiar religious views".

Independent candidate Bill Holden said before setting up academies
politicians should first "make sure children can read or write".

Rev Robert West, the British National Party candidate, said academies
evaded the real issue of the need for discipline in schools.

The Norwich North by-election is taking place on Thursday 23 July.


Councillor Rupert Read, Green Party candidate in the Norwich North byelection.
...TO HELP IN THE BYELECTION, EMAIL HELP@NORWICHGREENPARTY.ORG
Thanks, in anticipation!

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http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/england/norfolk/8152523.stm

15:27 GMT, Thursday, 16 July 2009 16:27 UK
Debate rages over academy schools

By Nic Rigby
BBC News, Norwich

One of the big education issues for parents in Norwich North - where a
by-election is taking place next week - is that of academy schools.
These schools, originally called city academies when first established
in 2000, are state-funded privately run schools with outside sponsors.

In Norwich, Heartsease High School became the Open Academy in 2008
despite opposition from parents and teachers. Controversy dogged the
process and its first principal has since departed.

Heartsease received extra investment from the government and sponsors
the Bishop of Norwich and Christian businessman Graham Dacre. The
pupils had new uniforms and the school had a new principal Lindsay
Knight.

Everything appeared to set the scene for success, but then at the
beginning of the month parents of pupils at the school received
letters saying Ms Knight would no longer be principal of the school.

Mr Dacre told the BBC that he hoped "the academy could make a positive
impact on the community of Heartsease".
"I hope whoever is elected to represent Norwich North will be a
supporter of academies and will do everything to support it," he said.

But Mike Smith, Norfolk county secretary of the National Union of
Teachers, said he could see very little advantage from a school
becoming an academy as they are still funded by the government, but
lose local accountability.

'Radical new approach'

In December last year a report by the Sutton Trust education charity
found that 13 of 29 academies inspected by Ofsted were rated
satisfactory, with only six rated outstanding.

Labour candidate for Norwich North seat Chris Ostrowski told the BBC
that academies should not be imposed from above.

"We need to make sure everyone is consulted... so everyone comes
together to raise standards," he said.

Chloe Smith, the Conservative candidate, said there had been some
local concern about Heartsease and the departure of the principal.

"We need a radical new approach to getting the supply side of schools
right, so that parents and church groups and charities can set up
schools and run them the way they know is best for their children,"
she said.

Liberal Democrat candidate April Pond said she was not a great
supporter of the government's academy school policy but felt at the
moment they might be the only way to get schools up to acceptable
levels. She said: "My view is that it would have been really nice if
this government had done what it said it would do and bring all
schools to a reasonable standard."

Green candidate Rupert Read criticised the need for academy schools.
"We believe the move to academy schools is wrong. It is privatisation
by stealth. Education should be about giving all our kids the best
chance," he said.

Glenn Tingle, the candidate for the United Kingdom Independence Party,
said academy schools were not the answer for improving education.
He said a return to the 11-plus exam was needed and added: "We would
like a grammar school in every town."

Put An Honest Man Into Parliament candidate Craig Murray said the
academy schemes can give "undue influence over children to people
motivated by peculiar religious views".

Independent candidate Bill Holden said before setting up academies
politicians should first "make sure children can read or write".

Rev Robert West, the British National Party candidate, said academies
evaded the real issue of the need for discipline in schools.

The Norwich North by-election is taking place on Thursday 23 July.


Councillor Rupert Read, Green Party candidate in the Norwich North byelection.
...TO HELP IN THE BYELECTION, EMAIL HELP@NORWICHGREENPARTY.ORG
Thanks, in anticipation!
30. 31. 32.