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Crippen looks at the offer for schools to change their status to that of an Academy / 26 May 2010

Michael Gove, the Education Secretary, is writing to all primary and secondary schools in England inviting them to become Academies and therefore independent of local authority control. This could mean thousands of schools leaving local authority control.

Chris Keates, general secretary of the NASUWT (Teachers Union), argued that it was wrong to stop local authorities from having a say in proposals for new schools,  and that [the proposal] represents a costly and unnecessary solution to a problem that simply does not exist. She added that such "Academies and free schools are a recipe for educational inequality and social segregation".

She's hit the nail on the head there ... For example, how many of these Academies are going to want to continue with integrating disabled children into main stream education when there'll be no financial incentive? Remember, these schools will be looking towards their local business community as part of their funding drive and  these funders will expect to generating some form of profit from their investment. I wouldn't think that they'd take kindly to forking out for additional tuition and support for disabled children.

There's also going to be an emphasis on presenting as a school of elite learners and achievers, a 'corporate image' that will attract more high achiever pupils and investers. This is just an old Tory strategy dressed up as an exciting new way of looking at education in this country. We'll soon end up with an even bigger divide between the rich and poorer members of the community, and with the remaining state schools loosing their best pupils and teachers to the cash rich Academies.

It will be interesting to see what this government comes out with regarding disabled people specifically, apart from the general changes that they are proposing that will have inevitable consequences on our lives. Be sure that I'll keep my ear to the ground and report back on anything else that comes to light.

Please leave a comment at the end of this blog and let me know what your thoughts and feelings are about this issue and the others that are coming out of the woodwork.  
 

Keywords: access issues,disabled people's movement,discrimination,dyslexia,funding,integrated education,invisible disabled people,learning disability,politics,poverty,young disabled people,

Comments

Alison Wilde

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27 May 2010

Perhaps they should introduce a hefty privilege tax/fee on the elite pupils to pay for a meaningful 'pupil premium'? (Not that it'll change social devision and poor learning environments... )

Gazz 76

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27 May 2010

It's another knockback... As a play worker and trainer the education agenda/system always seens to be one of the main barriers (excuses!)used in excuses for not including disabled children. At a recent training event for teaching assistants and lunchtime assistants we observed that all of the disabled children were made to wear 'high-vis vests'.

... and it doesnt get any better at University - Durham University, one of the countries leading Higher Education establishments have just made a £25,000 out of court settlement to a collegue, but denied the Discrimination claim! see attached;

http://www.guardian.co.uk/education/2010/may/25/diabled-student-drop-out-university-increase

Arty Farty

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27 May 2010

Spot on Mr C. Watch as we slide back into the Thatcher years and all that it implies with regard to Disabled people being pushed once more to the back of the queue!

elle

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26 May 2010

I think you ve hit the nail on the head - it will be elitist.

Disabled people will never be good for marketing purposes and parents wont want their kids to be associated with 'losers' and be tainted with disability???? if they have a choice they do not want their children to be slowed down.

Are we going back to the dark ages?