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What the delegates say

Lurline Champagnie, Harrow West councillor and school governor: "I think the free schools policy would work and would draw in local professionals, like doctors, financiers, accountants and lawyers, to help run their local schools. This is what we really want to do, let local people get involved. This is where excellence stems from."

Bob Garnham, prospective parliamentary candidate for Cheltenham, member of Gloucester's education committee: "Although local authorities will effectively disappear there will still be a role for the authority in some areas of welfare, secial needs and transport."

Robert Stanton, Bracknell Conservative Association: "Theresa May clearly has tremendous ideas for changing schools into free schools. I think teachers and governors will be able to improve education at a free school."

Jean Talbot, vice chair of governors at Tunstead primary school in Norfolk:

"The main issue for schools is that they are overburdened with paperwork. Our previous head was excellent but she left, despairing at all the paperwork. I hope the free-schools policy makes it easier to find high-calibre staff."

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