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How do we lead independents?

The Government's five-year strategy talks about a "new" role for local councils as strategic leaders and champions of parents and pupils. However, it creates barriers to performing this role.

By proposing to take schools out of the local system, the Government will paralyse councils trying to deliver leadership, integration of children's services and collaboration between schools, colleges and employers to provide more personalised learning.

Councils already ensure that the funding intended for schools is passed on and put in additional resources to drive up standards. Councils' role in supporting school improvement, challenging poor performance and aligning resources to meet local needs allows schools to focus on their core role - teaching. Councils also ensure a fair deal on admissions which autonomous individual schools can never deliver.

The Local Government Association is extremely disappointed that it was not consulted and is calling for a meeting with the Chancellor and the Deputy Prime Minister to discuss these proposals.

Sir Sandy Bruce-Lockhart Chairman, LGA

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