Teachers oppose Wyvern academy switch

PUBLISHED: 07:00 10 January 2011

Wyvern Community School

Wyvern Community School

Copyright Archant Ltd

CONVERTING a Weston school into an academy goes against public opinion and should be re-thought, according to the North Somerset teachers' union.

Wyvern Community School is earmarked for conversion in April, when it will change to the Hans Price Academy.

The move will see it withdrawn from North Somerset Council control, and run under the auspices of the Cabot Learning Federation.

Supporters of the academy idea say it will give school leaders improved control over finances and curriculum, and argue it will reap educational benefits for students.

But the North Somerset branch of the National Union of Teachers (NUT) has this week come out against the idea.

It points to the results of a recent public consultation which show the majority of people actually opposed the change.

And NUT North Somerset secretary Jon Reddiford is calling on authorities to listen to public opinion and ditch the Wyvern switch, and abort a similar plan for Backwell School too.

He said: “The main reason the NUT is opposed to academies is they stand outside local democracy and accountability.

“These two examples (Backwell and Wyvern) show precisely that when academy status comes in, local democracy and accountability go out of the window.

“In both cases most people involved are opposed. But both academies are still planning to go ahead anyway.

“The NUT is committed to supporting its members and local communities by campaigning against these schools becoming academies.”

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