We must stand together

Morgan and OsborneThe decision by George Osborne and Nicky Morgan to require all Schools to become academies by 2022 is deeply flawed and anti-democratic and like many others I believe should be firmly resisted. However whatever happens politically by 2022, it is vital that this sort of educational gerrymandering does not contribute to a sense of them and us in educational provision, there is already enough of that. It is vital that all those being educated develop an acceptance that their own education and that of their peers in other institutions is a matter of difference, rather than superiority or inferiority. I was at the tail end of the statutory 11 plus system and the division caused by the outcome of one exam on one day haunts many of my generation to this day. It is easy enough for us to find reasons why we are better or worse off than others up the road or even next door. The way we respond to Osborne and Morgan must address the politics, not end up criticising by default our neighbours, irrespective of how our children are educated. If these ideologues do get their way then the insidious ideology which lies behind the way this decision has been presented will damage our community. Less than a year after the General Election, for a Government to use a budget to introduce a major policy that they did not include in the manifesto, is a sign of abject failure. They were elected on a policy of increasing academies but not by force. That approach should offend every Conservative in the country as much as it does the rest of us. Nicky Morgan has been called to explain herself to MPs on 27th April, let us hope they help her to see how bad this decision is. As for those of us who are denied the chance to be part of that meeting we need to stand together. Enforced academies is as much a threat to those people whose children are already enjoying education in an academy as it is those who are opposed to academies on principle. The way in which Morgan has challenged the NUT to work with or against her in her speech today makes it clear she sees this policy and the white policy that introduces it as a way of dividing teachers from Government and the risk is that division will also damage communities. Let us agree that whatever the failings of this policy, that we won’t allow it to divide us from our neighbours.


About ianchisnall

I have a passion to see public policy made accessible everyone who want to improve the wellbeing of their communities. I am interested in issues related to crime and policing as well as in policies on health services and strategic planning.
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