Friday, June 25th How long did Department for Education officials and ministers spend cobbling together the official document they have published assessing the likely impact of their new academies policy? Not nearly long enough, to judge from what looks like the thrown-together character of this paper, and some truly heroic assumptions on which some of the calculations it comes up with appear to be based. The paper is an “impact assessment” of the academies bill, which is currently going through Parliament. The idea behind this sounds sensible: when policies come out, the government is supposed to show that it has thought through the implications ofRead More →

Friday, June 18th The “free schools” policy discussed on the radio this morning, and being launched in detail today by Michael Gove, is very interesting. It does pose legitimate questions about the influence of the state over what goes on in classrooms, and about the balance between national and local government power over what goes on in schools, professional freedom over decision-making, and parental decision-making. The most immediate questions centre on how the schools will be funded. I want to blog more on this subject in the coming weeks. However, I thought now I would just post on one particular aspect of the free schoolsRead More →