Teachers descend on Westminster to protest against academy plan

The Evening Standard is reporting that teachers descended on Westminster yesterday for a protest march against the Government’s plans to force all state schools to become academies.

Campaigners from the National Union of Teachers and the Association of Teachers and Lecturers staged the demonstration.

The protest follows an announcement by George Osborne in last week’s Budget that all state schools would be forced to become academies by 2020. 

Ahead of the rally, Kevin Courtney, deputy general secretary of the National Union of Teachers, said: “Converting all schools to academies will be a disaster for education and local democracy. 

“Despite there being no evidence that academy status improves education, Nicky Morgan is recklessly ploughing ahead with this policy. Many communities and schools have categorically said they do not want to convert to an academy.“

The Department for Education said it was “disappointing” that teachers’ unions were “taking this approach.”

…A DfE spokesman said: “Pupils are already benefitting hugely from the academies programme and thanks to our reforms more of them than ever before are going to good or outstanding schools, meaning more parents can access a good school place for their children.

“The changes we are making will put control back in the hands of teachers and school leaders – those who know their pupils best – making sure every single child has the opportunity to fulfil their potential.”

More at: Teachers descend on Westminster to protest against academy plan


See also this from the TES with video of the London protests: ‘Nicky Morgan on your bike, what we need is a teachers’ strike’ – watch as protesters march against academy plans


And of course many other protests took place elsewhere.

Were you involved in any of them? If so, please tell us how you think it went.

What do you think happens next? We’ve seen protests, petitions and newspaper articles opposed to the policy of forced academisation, but if all goes to plan, by the next election all schools will either already be academies or have committed to becoming one: do you see anything stopping this outcome now?

Please let us know in the comments or via Twitter…

Are you a trainee teacher, NQT, teacher, headteacher, parent or  just someone who cares about education and has something to get off  your chest in a Schools Improvement Guest Post? Follow this link for more details at the bottom of the page.

Don’t forget you can sign up to receive our daily email bulletin (around 7am) with all the latest schools news stories. Your details will never be given to anyone else and you can unsubscribe at any stage. Just follow this link.

We now have a Facebook page - please click to like!


Happy Easter to all school improvers - we'll be back in a few days
More students are dropping out of degrees
Categories: Academies, Policy and Teaching.


  1. andylutwyche

    SchoolsImprove Westminster security must be biggest growth industry in UK: yesterday teachers & disability campaigners; junior drs recently

  2. Nairb1

    As usual the DfE trots out ‘ and thanks to our reforms more of them than ever before are going to good or outstanding schools,’ in support of the academies programme. As Henry Stewart demonstrates clearly on the Local Schools Network almost all of the pupils going to good or outstanding schools which were previously RI or Inadequate are in non-academy primaries. The DfE must know this, as must the SoS, so once again a deliberately misleading use of statistics.

  3. bredsell

    SooThomas For all the fuss about academies, where are the protests about kids left behind in failing schools (many of which ARE academies)?

  4. SooThomas

    bredsell I believe the protests are about forcing academies on parents/schools & about some existing academy chains failing pupils.

  5. DrDD

    bredsell SooThomas Define a “failing school”. This is an arbitrary classification by arbitrary people using arbitrary data to give simplistic measures of school and student performance. I agree the fuss about academies is fudging the issue but using the notion they will improve performance and outcomes for children is just plain wrong.

  6. Nairb1 Yes – it’s in the primary sector where the proportion of good or better schools has risen.  And it’s the primary sector where there are a minority of academies.  In the heavily-academized secondary sector, the proportion of good or better schools has not grown.
    Correlation isn’t causation, of course, but the situation does rather blow a hole in the DfE’s claim that the rise in good or better schools is because they’ve become academies.
    Henry Stewart spears Morgan’s claims on last week’s Question Time here: http://www.localschoolsnetwork.org.uk/2016/03/nicky-morgan-is-that-really-all-the-evidence-youve-got

  7. bredsell

    SooThomas My point is that the focus is on structures rather than outcomes. Both Govt & protestors are wrong to focus on structure.

  8. Nairb1

    The protestors are focusing on structure only because the government is … and for reasons which are transparent to everybody. There’s big money in privatising education.

Let us know what you think...