Cut school autonomy to prevent bullying of headteachers, says Ofsted chief

Referring to the row over one school’s hijab ban, Amanda Spielman says sensitive decisions should be taken out of schools’ hands and passed to local authority, MAT or central government level reports Tes.

The Ofsted chief inspector has suggested cutting down on individual school and headteacher autonomy, in order to prevent schools from being bullied.

Addressing MPs this morning, Amanda Spielman said “If we are going to end up with an asymmetry, where people conscientiously running often very small schools can be effectively bullied and targeted in this way, I think we’re in a very worrying world.

“So it opens the question to me whether it is right to leave so much decision-making at individual school level, and whether some of these decisions that are becoming increasingly sensitive should be taken at local authority or MAT [multi-academy trust] or central government level.”

She added that the campaign against the hijab ban was largely conducted by people unconnected with the school.

“I don’t think that individual schools should be bullied by national lobbying campaigns,” she said. “I think that’s very different from consulting parents and finding working arrangements that are acceptable.”

Read more Cut school autonomy to prevent bullying of headteachers, says Ofsted chief

What do you think? Please tell us your thoughts in comments or via Twitter ~ Tamsin

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  1. Because it’s not like MATs would ever bully their staff or ‘local governing body’ in to doing whatever is best for the commercial prospects of their (emerging?) profit centre.

    ho ho ho ho ho

  2. wasateacher

    1. One of the arguments given for academisation is autonomy. Is Amanda Spielman now agreeing that this is wrong?
    2. Whereas I support schools being answerable to the local authority, the emphasis there is on LOCAL. Many MATs have schools 200+ miles away from each other and a considerable distance from the head office. I do not think that a Chief Executive Officer of a MAT who may have no teaching/education experience is in a fit place to do anything but study the accounts (whilst calculating how he can increase his salary?)

  3. So headteachers just become puppets following orders? Anyone worth their salt wouldn’t want to be a head like that. Any parent worth their salt wouldn’t want their child to have a head teacher like that.

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