Thursday, 1 January 2009

Education in Maidstone

Two bad bits of education news in Maidstone this week:

Firstly, Astor of Hever is applying for academy status. This from the KM: 'Mr Whitcombe said: “Academy status would be of tremendous benefit to the school community. It will help us to continue at a much faster pace with the improvements.”'

I wonder what he bases this assessment on? From where I sit:
  • There is no evidence that academies are better than traditional schools.
  • Privatisation of education is wrong.
  • Some academies have deviated so far from the national curriculum as to teach creationism as a science.
  • Lack of democratic control of schools is wrong (as it is for any public service).
This application must be opposed.

Secondly, Maidstone has become a university town. This press release from MBC appear verbatim in the KM this week. The Mayor and leader of the council both congratulated UCA on its achievement and then the press statement states that UCA is to close its Oakwood campus and build another somewhere else in Kent. So how is this an achievement for Maidstone, or have I missed something?

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