Survey indicates school leaders oppose academies plan


A recent survey by the National Union of Teachers (NUT) saw 93 per cent of headteachers, deputies and assistants respond saying that new government plans to turn all schools into academies are “inappropriate”.

Earlier in March, Chancellor George Osborne revealed plans for all schools in England to become academies by 2020, in his latest Budget. This would give schools greater independence from their local authorities, and more power over aspects such as staff, term times and budgets.

However, this move has been criticised, by school staff members and parents. The NUT survey found that only 3 per cent of respondents felt the plan was appropriate, with 4 per cent saying they did not know.

“These findings are bleak and reveal a bitter distrust from school leaders of the direction of travel for education policy in England,” said the general secretary of the NUT, Christine Blower.

“There are logical reasons why half of these school leaders say that they cannot go on and so they are thinking of leaving. The government has the wrong priorities. The strategy of cuts, teacher shortages and far-reaching, chaotic curriculum and assessment changes simply isn’t working.”

However, a spokesperson for the Department for Education said: “The fact that almost 70 per cent of all open academies have voluntarily become one suggests the concerns raised by those polled by the NUT are not shared more widely across the country.”