Council should not have to step in to sort out academy issues

Council should not have to step in to sort out academy issues

Council should not have to step in to sort out academy issues

First published in News

TODAY’S report that Oxfordshire County Council is intervening over pupil absences at two city academies raises worrying questions about moves to give schools greater independence.

The mantra for giving schools academy status – freeing leaders from council control – was that heads could run their schools without outside interference and it would in fact improve standards.

A noble idea perhaps and one that’s becoming more common in the public sector, particularly in the NHS where GPs control budgets and hospital managers with foundation status have much greater say over their priorities.

Yet taxpayers now face paying twice to sort out problems at St Gregory the Great Catholic School and Oxford Academy which – through the school and the council – are already saddled with creaking finances.

It’s to be welcomed that the council still clearly cares about the welfare of all pupils because, when it comes down to it, the schools can take or leave any help or advice they offer about pupils not turning up for class.

Yet as academies are directly funded by central government and independent of local authority control, surely it’s Mr Gove’s Department for Education that should be ensuring academies are doing their job properly and the DfE which should be footing any bill.

Just leaving heads to it could produce fantastic results – but it is also a recipe for complacency, paralysis of decision-making and political infighting.

Our top stories:

Adding extra lanes to A34 through Oxfordshire could cost £800m

Oxford Mail:

9:00am Monday 24th November 2014

PLANS to widen the A34 in both directions through Oxfordshire would cost at least £800 million, a new report has revealed.

Update: Road reopened after two people cut free following collision on the A44 near Begbroke

Oxford Mail:

12:44pm Monday 24th November 2014

THE A44 is closed following an incident between Spring Hill Road and Sandy Lane/ Rutten Lane between Yarnton and Begbroke.

Grieving family watches as motorist appears in court accused of killing Liberty Baker

Oxford Mail:

3:55pm Monday 24th November 2014

A MOTORIST accused of killing 14-year-old Liberty Baker as she walked to school appeared in court today.

Fog warning for Oxfordshire tonight and tomorrow morning

Oxford Mail:

3:25pm Monday 24th November 2014

A SEVERE fog warning has been put in place for Oxfordshire overnight and into tomorrow morning.

Explore today's interactive front page

Oxford Mail:

12:00pm Monday 24th November 2014

Want to explore our interactive front page? Here it is...

A44 at Wootton re-opens after accident

Oxford Mail:

9:46am Monday 24th November 2014

THE A44 near Wootton, West Oxfordshire has reopened in both directions after an accident.

Comments

Comments are closed on this article.

Send us your news, pictures and videos

Most read stories

Local Info

Enter your postcode, town or place name

About cookies

We want you to enjoy your visit to our website. That's why we use cookies to enhance your experience. By staying on our website you agree to our use of cookies. Find out more about the cookies we use.

I agree