Friday, August 10, 2007

New Statism

Amid news of consultation responses that read as if parents could not possibly be rightfully held responsible for ensuring that a child receives a suitable education, we hear via Fraser Nelson at the Spectator that School's Minister Lord Adonis, who had at least some moments of enlightenment when it comes to respecting parental and child choice in education, is losing his grip as Brown quietly undoes any public service reforms that Blair had managed to wriggle past his party.

"In education, a twin-track strategy is at work. Publicly, Mr Brown has praised City Academies, the quasi-independent schools which Mr Blair hoped to see spring up. Lord Adonis, joint architect and implementer of the scheme, remains in place as schools minister. Mr Brown's ministers have openly pledged to expand the scheme. But the new restrictions are strangling the reform into non-existence. The Academies are to lose their independent sponsor, adopt the national curriculum and - crucially - be subject to greater control by town halls.

The whole point of Mr Blair's Academy programme was that the schools were independent, sometimes explicitly branded like the Harris Academies in south London, always empowered to develop their own ethos away from the dead hand of council officials. Local authorities disliked the idea so much that they would drag Lord Adonis to the High Court attempting to blackball these rival schools. It is not hard to work out how they will use their new powers. The name "City Academy" may continue, but they will be indistinguishable from other schools. Lord Adonis is now running a ghost programme. It is over."

To which HEors can only reply "HELP".


Anonymous said...

They think parental influence is a bad thing.

Even more scary is that the majority of the population is already mentalised for this. Parents for the most part rather delegate their responsibilities to the state.

Wobblymoo said...

And so it continues.....