Head’s ‘bully’ blast at Gove

Margaret Lund, former head of Shakespeare Primary School in Fleetwood.
Margaret Lund, former head of Shakespeare Primary School in Fleetwood.
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A FORMER Wyre headteacher has accused education boss Michael Gove of using “bullying tactics” to force schools to become academies.

Margaret Lund, former head of Shakespeare Primary School in Fleetwood, spoke out after the Secretary of State for Education said urgent action is needed to “improve” Lancashire primary schools.

He believes academies would be the “best way to drive school improvement”.

Academies are schools that are directly funded by central government and independent of direct control by local government in England.

But county councils are responsible for ways to allocate funds between sections of education within an authority.

They may also receive additional support from personal or corporate sponsors and are self-governing.

Mrs Lund said: “The government, in its concern that its ideological position on academies is receiving a lukewarm response from the majority of educationalists, parents and governors, is now employing bullying tactics to pressurise schools to become academies against their will.

“It is true that some academies do well, while others get worse but two thirds of schools becoming academies did not improve test results.

“There have been some very dramatic failures of academies, far worse than local authority schools. Academies exclude more pupils and there are concerns about the selection procedures some academies use.”

Urging parents to ‘resist’ government pressure, she added: “Primary Schools need to be connected to the local community, they need to be accountable to it. Local links are important and academies destroy this. There is no provision for academies to return to the local authority system if they find it doesn’t work out.”

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