Academy school for Lancaster

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Steve Booth
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Joined: 10-05-04
Jul 5 2007 19:32
Academy school for Lancaster

The government wants to create an Academy school in Lancaster. This is going to replace three existing schools - Skerton High School, Central, and Hornby.

A group has been set up to oppose this.

I wonder if libcom people in the North West have any views about Academy schools, or ideas about how this should be opposed?

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JoeMaguire
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Joined: 26-09-03
Jul 21 2007 00:56

Knightrose is active in opposing them, maybe he will be along with shortly.

knightrose
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Joined: 8-11-03
Jul 21 2007 07:42

The problem with academies is that they are stealth schools. The changes are announced years in advance and too many people think "that won't effect me".
For example: all the kids already there will have left.
Another example: lots of the teachers at my school will be heading for retirement by 2012 when it'll be closed to open an academy. Most of them have experience of industrial action and their presence helps give strength to the younger teachers.
Another problem is the chronic division amongst education workers.

OK that's the bad stuff. But we must fight them. They privatise education . This means schools will lose access to local authority support services as of right. They will be run in many cases by religious groups. These groups will have effect on the curriculum. (Just think of that!) Worst of all they remove education workers from nationally agreed terms and conditions. Which will mean longer hours and lower pay for everyone working in schools - except the senior managers, of course. At my school the only person ho appears 100% in favour is the head.

There's loads more to say about how crap they are. The campaign against them is going badly. The unions hate them but want to make sure that they have organising rights within the new academies.

I really would appreciate the views of others. Especially those who work in secondary education (if they exists) and those who either study in schools or are parents.

Steve Booth
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Joined: 10-05-04
Sep 7 2007 21:09

Just an update on this:
A strong campaign group has been set up against it. They held a meeting and barracked the county councillor in charge of schools.

A general atmosphere of opposition to it in Lancaster meant that by the time the deadline for bids came, as far as I know, only one proposer was in the running, the local technical college.

The local tech was also being lambasted by the public inquiry into the Lancaster Northern by-pass for having ideas above its importance to the local community. With any luck the bid will lack credibility and be thrown out.

Unfortunately a kind of admissions blight has settled over the threatened schools. This is particularly bad for the Hornby school, which is one of the smallest secondary schools in Lancashire.

knightrose
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Joined: 8-11-03
Sep 8 2007 09:53

Your comments about admissions blight ring true. It's happened at our local school. Around 40 fewer year 7s this year. It all helps make the closure more likely.

knightrose
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Sep 8 2007 09:54

double post sad