Call in the feds

2nd October 2009 at 01:00

Anyone close to education knows that the toxic spending by New Labour cannot be sustained. Serious budget cuts will have to be made whoever is elected next year.

I loved the sarcasm in Gerard Kelly's excellent comments ("Put down the machete, Mr Balls", September 25), but they failed to recognise that headteachers in their current guise are in the last chance saloon.

I do not believe that federating secondary schools in our major towns and cities would disembowel our education service. Headteachers no longer do the job they were intended to do: that is, lead from the classroom. I became a school leader because I wanted to rejuvenate the classroom experience for youngsters, not chase paper or attend puerile meetings.

The federation of groups of schools each with a managing director and one board of "qualified" governors would streamline and professionalise the running of our schools.

The current national organisation of schools is a muddle and I believe federation is a solution where professionally competent management take the business decisions and headteachers lead the education from the chalk face.

Tony Callaghan, Director of Teachers in Classrooms, Alpington, Norfolk.

Log-in as an existing print or digital subscriber

Forgotten your subscriber ID?


To access this content and the full TES archive, subscribe now.

View subscriber offers


Get TES online and delivered to your door – for less than the price of a coffee

Save 33% off the cover price with this great subscription offer. Every copy delivered to your door by first-class post, plus full access to TES online and the TES app for just £1.90 per week.
Subscribers also enjoy a range of fantastic offers and benefits worth over £270:

  • Discounts off TES Institute courses
  • Access over 200,000 articles in the TES online archive
  • Free Tastecard membership worth £79.99
  • Discounts with Zipcar,, Virgin Wines and other partners
Order your low-cost subscription today