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:

UPDATE: Armed police in Oxford University Parks during hunt for Jed Allen over triple murder in Didcot + new video

Oxford Mail:

8:11am Sunday 24th May 2015

ARMED police have been seen in Oxford University Parks as the hunt continues for Jed Allen over a triple murder in Didcot.

The Rifles march through Oxford for first time after getting Freedom of the City

Oxford Mail:

10:39am Sunday 24th May 2015

INFANTRYMEN of The Rifles regiment are marching through Oxford this morning for the first time.

FOOTBALL: Mike Ford is relishing challenge after taking over as Banbury United boss

Oxford Mail:

9:30am Saturday 23rd May 2015

Former Oxford United captain Mike Ford is relishing a return to management with Banbury United, after spending more than a year out of the game.

Jury told fire started because businessman thought best man was having affair with wife

Oxford Mail:

8:29am Friday 22nd May 2015

A HOUSE fire that forced people to jump for their lives was started by a businessman who accused his best man of having an affair with his wife, a jury heard.

UPDATE: Missing woman Rachel Selby from Banbury found safe

Oxford Mail:

3:16pm Friday 22nd May 2015

A WOMAN who went missing from Banbury has been found, police said

Person hit by train between Slough and Reading likely to affect Oxford rail services to London

Oxford Mail: A First Great Western High Speed Train

3:24pm Friday 22nd May 2015

TRAINS from Oxford could be disrupted after a person was hit by a train between Slough and Reading.

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