Wednesday, 12 March 2008
Breaking down educational apartheid
One of the most impressive aspects of the Academies programme has been the extent to which it has broken down many of the barriers that had built up between state and independent schools. Several private schools have abandoned fees and selection to become academies, with Bristol Cathedral School and Colston Girls following others in Merseyside and Manchester. At the same time, independent schools are increasingly becoming academy sponsors; and today's news that Winchester is to do so is a great fillip for the programme. Incidentally, while the government has been highlighting the egregious admissions practices of maintained schools, it is noticeable that contrary to the claims of their opponents, academies are not among the offenders; many use banding to ensure fair admissions.