Tuesday, 1 September 2009

Bad news for Falmer Academy plan

The Guardian has reported that Government spending cuts will hit children in the catchment areas of new academy schools hardest - and first.

Though no figures are given (yet), it's pretty clear that Education Minister Ed Balls has lost faith in the Blairite model of replacing local authority-run comprehensive schools with 'free at the point of delivery' independent schools run by businesses, churches and other private bodies.

A bit of Labour backbone in the face of a massive privatisation gamble with the future of our children perhaps?

Maybe. But if so the losers of a decade of indecision about the way state schools are run are bound to be the children of Moulescoomb and Coombe Road.

The fast-improving Falmer High School is to be closed next year, with the pupils transferred to one of the new academies - the scheme's only saving grace was the extra Government money it would have brought in (£28m was the figure quoted during the original debate) but now even that's looking uncertain.

So it look like Brighton and Hove Council will have given up its say in the future of education for thousands of local children for no real reason at all.

If I'm elected as Green MP for Brighton Kemptown I will certainly do everything I can to find ways of improving all the schools in the area while keeping them in the state sector.

Can the Labour-Tory axis that has run things for so long make the same promise?

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