The Big Question

Angie Lawrence
Single mother

This strategy will increase inequality in education. Academies
benefit the few at the expense of the many, and are really a form
of privatisation. The individual needs of children will be
neglected. Extended schools are more likely to protect vulnerable
children so the government should concentrate on that.

Jean Stogdon
Grandparents Plus

When I was a social worker if things went wrong I was held to
account. I’m a firm believer in this principle of accountability.
The more independent these schools are, the more outside the system
they are and the less accountable they are. Look at the city
academy in Middlesbrough which is already in trouble.

Len Smith
Gypsy activist

From what I have seen in the media, the emphasis is on the
negatives. I have not yet heard anyone claim any positives,
although there may be some. I have to say I’m getting a bit fed up
with this constant “tweaking” of the status quo in education,
health and social care. If a thing ain’t broke, it shouldn’t need

Kierra box
Young people’s activist

It seems that the government considers the most important
qualification for tomorrow’s school heads to be financial
dexterity, not care over the well-being and educational development
of their students. Schools need state support and funding far more
than private backing. This so-called autonomy should be

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