Wrong priority

5th June 2009 at 01:00

Nick Bourne, the Welsh Conservative leader, is wrong to claim there is "a growing body of evidence that freeing up schools to make their own decisions leads to a wide range of benefits" ("Welsh Tories back academies project", TES Cymru, May 29).

The truth is that there is no evidence the academies programme has improved results. Even the government-commissioned PricewaterhouseCoopers report admits this.

Welsh schools receive 10 per cent funding less than their English counterparts, and David Reynolds blames the poor overall performance of Welsh 15-year-olds in international comparisons on that underinvestment.

Nick Bourne should be making that his priority, rather than risk damaging Welsh education by introducing the expensive white elephant of the academies programme.

Kevin Courtney, Anti Academies Alliance officer, London.

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, Buyagift.com, Virgin Wines and other partners
Order your low-cost subscription today