Hands Off Telscombe Cliffs & Peacehaven Heights Primary Schools

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Phil Clarke
Phil Clarke signed this petition

Say no to the academisation of our schools – our kids deserve better

As parents, teachers, governors, support staff and community members we call upon to halt the academisation of Peacehaven Heights and Telscombe Cliffs Primary Schools in the interests of our children, staff and the wider community.

We do not want our community schools to become part of a Multi-Academy Trust because:

1.      The move could jeopardise educational standards 

Both of our schools are already rated ‘good’ and are already working closely together and with other local schools. We do not see what benefits such a move would make to our schools. Further than this we fear standards at our schools may be under threat by the move as academies have greater freedom to employ unqualified teachers unlike local authority maintained schools. We are also aware that average salaries for teachers in academy schools are lower and therefore schools may struggle to attract the best teachers our children deserve.

Teachers in academy schools are more likely be unqualified, are paid less and generally staff turn over will be higher.    

2.      Academies do NOT have more money

More academies are in the red than local authority run schools. In addition to this there is an increasing body of evidence of growing layers of well-paid bureaucracy within MATs which is taking resources away from front-line teaching and learning – they use their money to pay for administration, consultancy work and CEO salaries. Last year the Department for Education wrote to 213 MATs asking them to justify the high salaries they paid to academy bosses.

3.      Multi-Academy Trusts are less accountable to parents

MATs can do away with local governing boards. All power ultimately rests with the trustees who can delegate power to local governing boards if they wish to. There will be no Governing body to make decisions on what’s best for our children and the school – the decision of the daily running of the school will be made by bureaucrats who have never been in the school.

In addition to Local Authority appointed governors our schools currently have staff and parent governors who can take up parent and staff concerns. East Sussex County Councillors can also be lobbied and are held accountable through the ballot box when there are concerns about a school. This would end if our schools academised leaving our local community powerless to hold our schools to account. 

4.      There is no going back from academisation

The academisation of a school is a permanent change. The currently exists no mechanism for an academy to return to local authority maintained status, even when that is in the best interests of the schools and the will of the parents and staff. Academy schools can only be re-brokered which means they are given to another academy trust to run. Parents, staff and the community have no say in this process.

Please sign and share the petition as our kids deserve better.

Hands off Peacehaven Heights and Telscombe Cliffs Primary Schools