There's only one 'power junkie' in the building

11th February 2011 at 00:00

With rare unanimity, NASUWT and the NUT have hit the nail on the head ("Teacher leaders scorn 'power junkies' who talk up localism but won't let go", 4 February).

The Education Bill is not about the Coalition or Parliament doing this or that - the bill is almost the final move in giving the secretary of state absolute control of the school system in England. To that extent, the plural in "power junkies" is inaccurate. Power is to be located in an individual.

If anyone doubts this, what are the few things they believe a secretary of state will not be able to do to a school or any other part of the school system?

If any institutions, such as academies, funded under such a contract believe themselves to be secure, they should note that no government nor its ministers can bind their successors.

So what do they think a future education secretary, now holding terminable funding contracts with schools, might decide to do with each or any of those contracts? Lewis Carroll made my point well in "The Walrus and the Carpenter".

Sir Peter Newsam, Former chief schools adjudicator, North Yorkshire.

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