Westminster school to become academy

No

Quintin Kynaston in St John’s Wood is one of 142 schools across the country which has accepted the government’s offer to become an academy since the bill was rushed through Parliament last month.

In revealing the list, the Education Secretary Michael Gove said on Wednesday: “More great heads and teachers controlling schools will bring better behaviour and teaching to thousands more children.”

However, teachers’ unions were quick to point out that thousands of schools have shunned the offer. In Camden, the only school which has been signed off as an academy is the new UCL Academy in Swiss Cottage, which was on the cards before the election.

Two other Westminster schools – St George’s School in Maida Vale and St Marylebone School – registered their interest in academy status but there was no mention of them in Wednesday’s list.

The prospect of a new academy in Westminster sparked anxieties that it could produce a polarised education system – sapping resources away from other schools.

Jeff Bates, branch secretary for Westminster NUT, previously said: “My biggest concern is the way this would polarise the education system in Westminster. We already have quite an unequal education system with large numbers of voluntary aided and religious schools.”