Interference- how my memory suppresses local tyranny

The main argument put forward in favour of academisation is that schools will be freed from local authority interference or “tyranny” as Toby Young calls it. Since the White Paper, Educational Excellence Everywhere, was published I’ve been racking my brain to think of examples where in my career my work has been interfered with. At times I’ve been frustrated by a local authority when underfunded systems have not worked well but I cannot recall, in the various roles I’ve held in schools, direct interference on what I was trying to do.  I’m starting to wonder if I’ve lived some parallel life to other teachers. 

My experiences include: 

Frequent phone calls to the local authority governor support officer who was always available to talk on the phone.

Local authority press officer support after a critical incident 

Training (of variable quality) offered on a term lay basis and co-ordinated by a small team

Submitting admissions criteria for scrutiny

Meeting various LA governors over the years

Attending briefings

Arranging admission of children with statements 

Coordinating a managed move of a child about to be excluded in another school 

Meeting an LA appointed SIP to talk data and priorities

Corporate procurement meetings 

Moderation of EYFS and teacher assessment 

Submitting assessment data

None of these were interference.  Perhaps I am suffering from suppressed memory where the tyranny is being blocked by my subconscious. I am not arguing that LAs did a fantastic job but I see no evidence that the provision and structures replacing them is any higher in quality. 

I also have the experience of being in Birmingham when Tim Brighouse arrived and galvanised schools, teachers and governors in a way that without a local authority would not have been possible. 


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s