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full steam ahead for 'academies revolution'

4 June 2010

This week, Michael Gove announced that over 1000 schools have expressed interest in becoming academies. The government's Academies Bill, introduced last week, enables all maintained schools to apply to become academies. It also promises automatic approval of academy status for those schools judged "Outstanding" by Oftsed.

To date, 626 "outstanding" schools have registered their interest in converting to academies. Despite their existing success, they are presumably tempted by the promise of greater independence. Rapid expansion of the academy population currently looks inevitable and the government has been keen to emphasise the types of freedoms that academies will enjoy, such as the freedom to adapt the National Curriculum and vary the length of the school day. However, governors and the wider school community may still need to be convinced of the benefits of conversion, not least because of its historic association with failing schools.

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Mark Blois

Mark Blois

Partner and Head of Education

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