Public and Commercial Services Union
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Schools need support not threats

Our general secretary Mark Serwotka has added his name to a call for the government to withdraw its statement that 20 per cent of England's secondary schools should 'improve or close'.

A recent announcement by secretary of state for children, schools and families, Ed Balls, implied that 638 schools in the UK are failing, yet Ofsted reports show many of them are improving. Some have been described as outstanding.

The Anti Academies Alliance is urging supporters to add their names to a statement which expresses concern at both the criteria for success and the suggested remedy of closing schools to reopen them as academies, even though 26 academies are included in the list.

The statement says: “Perhaps most damningly this announcement appears to have no concern for the impact on the pupils, parents, teachers, governors, headteachers and support staff.”

It adds: “This announcement was not based on careful consideration of the evidence of what works. Naming and shaming schools does not improve them.”

The campaign has attracted influential support with Christine Blower, NUT acting general secretary, Sally Hunt, UCU general secretary, and respected education journalists Fiona Millar and Francis Beckett already signed up.

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