Nicky Morgan’s “dramatic” change of her plan to turn all English schools into privately-owned academies is to let councils own some of them. Big deal.
We have established that at least one academy trust is using tax avoidance schemes to funnel public money into private offshore bank accounts, so perhaps we should be asking what Thicky Nicky is offering, here.
Is she trying to bribe councils by letting them have a piece of that lovely tax-free offshore pie as well?
In any case, we should ask one important question:
How, exactly, is this supposed to improve education standards when academies are so far behind LEA-run schools?
Nicky Morgan is reportedly planning to make a dramatic U-turn over the policy to force all schools to transform into academies, amid a looming Tory rebellion in the Commons.
In a significant concession to backbenchers the Education Secretary is considering allowing the best-performing councils to run their own academy chains.
The original plan – unveiled by the Chancellor George Osborne at his Budget speech last month – intends to turn 18,600 state schools into academies within six years. Those who have not been converted must have plans in place to do so by 2022.
But in a sign of the opposition Ms Morgan faces from within her own party, one Conservative MP described the flagship education policy as “f***ing poison” to The Times.
With a majority of just 17 in the Commons, and a rebel number of up to 40 MPs, the government will be forced to water down the policy if it is to pass through the House. It will be a considerable blow to Ms Morgan who has repeatedly insisted there will be no U-turn in the plans.
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