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DfE is 'relaxed'

Your article "Acadamy expansion plans in jeopardy" (June 11) missed the point that there are no targets, deadlines, pressures or goals tied to our invitation to schools seeking academy status. Schools will be completely free to convert in their own time, or to stay as they are. This is a permissive not a coercive approach. We are simply offering them the chance to apply for greater professional freedoms if they want to.

More than a thousand schools have already expressed an interest in becoming an academy, which tells you something. Subject to the Academies Bill getting through Parliament, some of these may be able to open in September, some may not. We are relaxed either way.

Lord Hill, Parliamentary under-secretary of state for schools.

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