Blunkett stalls on opt-outs

24th March 1995 at 00:00
David Blunkett, Labour's education spokesman, this week sought to reassure heads of grant-maintained schools without giving any detail of the policy that will guide a future Labour government.

In a speech designed not to alarm either GM schools or those in the party keen to see them returned to local authority control, Mr Blunkett insisted that Labour intends to enhance parental preference and ensure that there is a fair admissions policy across all schools.

Local authorities, he told a meeting in London, will have a key role to play but Labour was not going back to the pre-1989 era when local authorities could have been said to "control" schools.

"There has been much exaggeration about the extent of town and county-hall bureaucracy in the past, but I know from talking to many of you that there also has been some truth in it," he said. Mr Blunkett stressed the changes that have taken place, particularly local management, which have increased schools' independence.

Labour, he insisted, wanted a flexible partnership with schools that allowed them to choose those services they can provide themselves and those which would be better offered by a LEA.

The guiding principles of the policy being drafted are, he said, equitable funding of schools, greater accountability, and support for those schools with agreed programmes for improvement.

Subscribe to get access to the content on this page.

If you are already a Tes/ Tes Scotland subscriber please log in with your username or email address to get full access to our back issues, CPD library and membership plus page.

Not a subscriber? Find out more about our subscription offers.
Subscribe now
Existing subscriber?
Enter subscription number


The guide by your side – ensuring you are always up to date with the latest in education.

Get Tes magazine online and delivered to your door. Stay up to date with the latest research, teacher innovation and insight, plus classroom tips and techniques with a Tes magazine subscription.
With a Tes magazine subscription you get exclusive access to our CPD library. Including our New Teachers’ special for NQTS, Ed Tech, How to Get a Job, Trip Planner, Ed Biz Special and all Tes back issues.

Subscribe now