A LEADING voice at County Hall has backed the Prime Minister’s pledge to end local authority control of schools by claiming it will drive up standards.
At the Conservative Party conference in Manchester, David Cameron claimed local councils running schools would become a ‘thing of the past’.
Coun John Campion, cabinet member with responsibility for Children and Families at Worcestershire County Council, lent his support to the pledge.
“Already a large number of schools in the county are run as independent schools, ie as academies,” he said.
“The county still has a leadership role with those schools despite them not being local authority schools.
“The academy process has seen much-needed investment in our schools, and the autonomy can lead to them flourishing.
“I’m fully behind anything that helps drive up educational standards and improve the life chances of young people in Worcestershire.”
11 schools in Worcester have converted to academy status, but the leader of the Labour group on the County Council has attacked the plans and claimed parents should be concerned about councils losing control.
Coun Peter McDonald said: “We all should be concerned over the local authority losing control of schools. Academies reflect a serious democracy deficiency and more and more are now failing.
“Ideology should not come before the wellbeing of our future.”