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Academies give more power to teachers?

Discussion in 'Education news' started by katykook, Mar 20, 2016.

  1. katykook

    katykook Occasional commenter

    After listening to Any Questions on Radio 4 yesterday and hearing members of the panel say that becoming an academy will give HTs and teaching staff more autonomy I can't help wondering why this blatant spin is not being challenged. We all know that it will be the businesses running the academies who will have control as they will hold the purse strings.
  2. Scintillant

    Scintillant Star commenter

    Because teachers do not have a voice

    And no one speaks for them.

    Expecting the people who chair shows like Dimbleby and Marr etc to do it, is pointless.

    To be blunt, no one cares enough any more - teachers, parents, heads, politicians.
  3. katykook

    katykook Occasional commenter

    I fear you're right so I will just have to stick to shouting at the radio.
  4. Benbamboo

    Benbamboo Occasional commenter


    I can't remember the last time I heard from the leaders of NUT or NASUWT. Russel Hobby is the only vocal one at the moment and every now and the Mary Bousted raises her head, but not enough or forceful enough to make any impact.

    The mismanagement of the education system will lead to future problems. There is nothing imminent or juicy in addressing the issues so the mass media couldn't care less.

    Parents don't seem to be bothered either, despite so many of them complaining to schools about how hard it all is or the changes being made, not enough of them actually care enough to write to their MP or do anything else about it. Even if the unions mobilised effectively, I'm pretty sure many parents would still be against any action, even those who regularly complain.

    As for politicians, all the main parties, at some point or another, have continued the academy agenda when in power. Either they all know some great secret that they're not telling us, or they're all equally complicit in the problem. Shining a spotlight on it in opposition would highlight their own failings when in power.
    delnon, stupot101 and katykook like this.
  5. Flere-Imsaho

    Flere-Imsaho Star commenter

    The great secret they know is that education is expensive and academies will eventually allow them to cut the budget without having to shoulder the blame for falling standards.
  6. stupot101

    stupot101 Established commenter

    As for politicians, all the main parties, at some point or another, have continued the academy agenda when in power. Either they all know some great secret that they're not telling us, or they're all equally complicit in the problem. Shining a spotlight on it in opposition would highlight their own failings when in power.

    This makes interesting reading

    Thatcher's neo-liberal policies affected not only industry and commerce but also public services.

    Conservative legislation sought to drive neo-liberal principles into the heart of public policy. An emphasis on cost reduction, privatisation and deregulation was accompanied by vigorous measures against the institutional bases of Conservatism's opponents, and the promotion of new forms of public management. The outcome of these processes was a form of governance in which market principles were advanced at the same time as central authority was strengthened. (Jones 2003:107)

    Thus the twin aims of Margaret Thatcher's education policies in the 1980s were to convert the nation's schools system from a public service into a market, and to transfer power from local authorities to central government

    The origins of this policy can be traced back to the establishment in 1955 of the Institute of Economic Affairs (lEA), a right-wing think-tank which, during the 1970s, had 'worked tirelessly to persuade the Conservative Party to abandon the post-war welfare consensus and embrace social and educational policies based on nineteenth-century free-market anti-statism' (Chitty 2004:47)

  7. misterhall

    misterhall New commenter

    I think the problem is that a lot of parents don't understand how privatising a school can damage their children's education.
    katykook and HelenREMfan like this.
  8. Yoda-

    Yoda- Lead commenter

    Academies give more power to teachers?

    I think we know the answer to this one. Power for headteachers maybe. Classroom teachers no. Why do people not question the statement? Most don't understand what academies are or care.

    katykook and SportyK like this.
  9. SportyK

    SportyK Occasional commenter

    Academies have nothing to do with improving education.

    Kevin Courtney, Deputy General Secretary of the NUT, had quite a bit to say on it a year ago.
    Shedman likes this.
  10. SportyK

    SportyK Occasional commenter

    "Conflicts of interests in trusts are a real issue, as shown by the cases which have come to light so far, and they are magnified in the public eye by the latent potential for the misuse, apparent or actual, of public money. It is essential that academy trustees act as trustees and on the Nolan principles of conduct in public life. We acknowledge that the DfE has responded and strengthened the system but we believe that the Department should go further. We recommend that the DfE take further steps to strengthen the regulations for governance in academy trusts and that the EFA revise its guidance on at cost transactions to make expectations of academies clearer."

    House of Commons Education Committee Report 2015-2015: Academies and free schools.
    wanet likes this.
  11. darklord11

    darklord11 Occasional commenter

    Yes to the Head administrator sorry teacher to hire unqualified staff reduce the quality of education the children receive and pay themselves and their mates a huge bonus so they send their kids to private school.
    First thing any academy does is get rid of expensive classroom staff. Our unions seem unwilling to fight and don't seem very media savvy.
    Shedman, wanet, SportyK and 1 other person like this.
  12. phlogiston

    phlogiston Star commenter

    ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha h a ha ha ha ha ha ha
    Shedman and delnon like this.
  13. harrypottergeek

    harrypottergeek New commenter

    Perhaps we can make them aware!

    If the unions can't do it perhaps we need to do it ourselves. The power of social media can be phenomenal. Let's harness it! (I just can't think of a good hashtag... one that can catch on the way iminworkjeremy or notfairnotsafe have done!)
  14. wanet

    wanet Star commenter

    delnon and harrypottergeek like this.
  15. harrypottergeek

    harrypottergeek New commenter

    Great idea wanet!
    Goes somewhat against the grain for a teacher to have much of an online presence (I know I keep my privacy settings cranked right up) but I really think we need to embrace social media to get our message out there!
  16. wanet

    wanet Star commenter

    But what is the message?
    It needs to be clear. Simply being against e.g. Academies might not cut it. Some have done well, even though on average they haven't.
    If the message is about funding, it appears to be about pay.
    Look at the messages that the Government are putting out. To be effective there has to be a clear message.
  17. harrypottergeek

    harrypottergeek New commenter

    I agree wanet. Academies themselves are not necessarily bad. Suggesting that teachers have more power by being *forced* into academisation is obviously completely contradictory... how can you have more power if you have no choice about the format of your school?
    I think it comes down to a few key issues:
    Mental health of pupils and staff (particularly due to increased and counter-productive testing starting at earlier and earlier ages)
    Loss of excellent teachers leading to pupils not having access to the quality of education they should have.
    The aforementioned testing and loss of teachers leading to pupils leaving school with boxes ticked but unprepared for work/ university/ life.
  18. Compassman

    Compassman Star commenter

    It give some HTs more autonomy to treat their staff poorly..............
    katykook likes this.
  19. Shedman

    Shedman Star commenter

    The latest shambles regarding the resignation of Ian duncan Smith illustrates the readiness of the government to shift the blame onto others for disastrous policies. I can just imagine Madame Morgan saying 'We 've increased school funding by such and such amount (totally inadequate of course) and we've given the academy heads the power (?) To spend it as they wish so if there are shortfalls in this area it's their spending decisions at fault.'
    delnon and wanet like this.
  20. harrypottergeek

    harrypottergeek New commenter

    Also makes me think of the fantastic poem by Taylor Mali "What do teachers make?" http://www.taylormali.com/poems-online/what-teachers-make/ (if you've not come across it - there's also a video of him performing it on youtube)
    Teaching and school is about more than test results. We shouldn't be expected to consider children as data rather than individuals!
    fineliner and katykook like this.

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