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local authority league tables aims to address inequalities

28 November 2012

Ofsted will launch a league table of local authorities based on inspection ratings of schools. Chief Inspector Michael Wilshaw commented that rather than being a 'naming and shaming' exercise, the aim is to 'disseminate good practice'. He believes the current level of disparity between local authorities is unacceptable and cites the fact that parents’ prospects of getting their child into a good school varies hugely across the country.

Wilshaw’s view is that strong local authorities work closely with all of their schools and intervene when required and should not be turning their back on schools when they become academies.

The timing of these league tables seems odd given the move towards centralisation of education through the academies programme. Why hold local authorities more accountable when an increasing number of schools have moved away from local authority control? One answer is to put more pressure on local authorities to use their powers to intervene where schools (which are not yet academies) in their area are under-performing.

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