Schools in meltdown: Pros and cons of academies

First published in News

PROS

Freedoms over budget mean that academies can direct resources to where they feel their priorities are.

They can also ‘shop around’ to find the best deals for services, or opt to buy back from the local authority.

There is additional money available for set-up costs and more funding to cover the costs of services the local authority no longer provides.

In sponsored academies, the idea is a fresh start with a sponsor holding the school to account to help drive up standards.

The power to set staff pay and conditions could allow schools to offer pay incentives to attract and keep high quality staff.

As owner and manager of the buildings and grounds, there is more opportunity for the school to sell or rent parts of the site to raise income.

CONS

The additional funding for services no longer provided through the local authority may not cover the additional costs.

Academies are forbidden to operate at a deficit which could have an impact on staffing and resources if the predecessor school has historically carried over a deficit.

Academies become liable for central staffing costs such as maternity cover, trade union cover, long-term sickness and for terminating employment.

Related links

If academies outnumber schools, it affects the viability of the services the local authority provides to maintained schools.

More responsibility falls on the governing body and sponsor, if there is one.

Academy schools are accountable to their governors, their sponsors and the Education Secretary, rather than to the local authority, which some feel erodes local accountability.

Comments

Comments are closed on this article.

Send us your news, pictures and videos

Most read stories

Local Info

Enter your postcode, town or place name

About cookies

We want you to enjoy your visit to our website. That's why we use cookies to enhance your experience. By staying on our website you agree to our use of cookies. Find out more about the cookies we use.

I agree