In the first instance, concerned parents are campaigning for a proper consultation about the proposals. They say: 'To consult with and inform parents, it has been suggested that over the summer holiday a random selection of 5 parents from each year followed by a one hour meeting by the Board of Governors is adequate. This petition is for a full and unbiased consultation with all parents and the local community before this important and far reaching change is pushed through to become an Academy'. They further argue:
- 'The decision to become an academy can’t be reversed,
- It affects whole community, not just current parents
- Some claim it will mean more money, but others say this will mean taking money off other local schools
- Some claim it will mean more freedom but other say parents will lose rights over Special Educational Needs etc
- The school will be run by a ‘trust’ – a private company set up by the governors. We may like the current head and governors, but what happens when they leave?'
Truth to tell, the full implications of the ConDem Academy plans are still unclear as so little detail has been published. But what is clear is that the plans are driven by an ideological imperative to create a market of competing schools, with a greater role for private business, and a reduction in the already limited input for parents and the community on governing bodies.