Gove's Ofsted exemption risks shifting 'outstanding' schools into reverse gear

4th June 2010 at 01:00

Under any cool, calm analysis, the Conservatives' proposals do represent a fundamental change in our educational system, greater than any proposed since 1944. There has been little public debate over the proposals and no majority vote in the general election. Schools are not even obliged to hold any parental vote before becoming academies.

It is undemocratic and Ofsted - that widely discredited quango that is the judge and jury - may not even be required to visit an academy once it is rated "outstanding".

In these new academies, the curriculum could go out of the window along with agreed national pay rates. The building costs will no doubt be extracted from the Building Schools for the Future programme, which had more creditable aspirations.

We will be left with educational social Darwinism. The aspirational right-wing will have what they seek: a segregated system fit for them. And what of the rest: the vulnerable, the poorly behaved, the parentally challenged, the underclass? Well, they can go hang.

This is not freedom, it is anarchy. People must wake up and fight; there isn't much time.

Paul Silvester, Sheffield.

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