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Apparent stampede for academy status throws up clouds of dust

I was disappointed to find in your editorial of last week not a mention of the hundreds of elected representatives of communities - councillors - who work to help schools to provide a high standard of education for the children of the people they represent.

I am the main opposition spokesperson for children, families and education on Kent County Council. Believe me, I do not admire all that the political administration does. However, I believe that the county has a dedicated, high-quality group of officers whose job it is to challenge and support schools, and who make a difference. I find your words "council deadbeats" gratuitously insulting to them.

Your vision seems to be a landscape where schools may spring up at will, without regard to the effect on existing, well-performing schools. Surely a better vision would be a co-operative of schools, under the umbrella of a local authority scrutinised by elected representatives of the community? Even in a county such as Kent, riven by the fault line of selection, striving towards that ideal seems to me better than your alternative.

Martin Vye, Liberal Democrat spokesperson, Kent County Council.

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