After weeks of controversy and parliamentary outcry, the Department for Education has pulled a surprising about-face and withdrawn their plans to forcibly turn all schools into academies, despite education secretary Nicky Morgan’s previous assertion that there would be “no reverse gear” on the reforms.
News this month has been dominated by the recent government white paper outlining plans for the academisation of British schools, with increased press scrutiny on both the management and the nature of academies and academy trusts.
In its latest budget the government has announced its plans to transform all schools into academies, aiming to bring all schools to academy status by 2022. There are currently 5,000 academies in England out of a total of 24,000 schools, with the majority of non-academy schools being primaries. While the government has always been clear on its plans to step up the academisation of schools, many are still surprised by the scale of the proposal and the sudden way in which academy status is to be imposed.