Free Schools list for 2014

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Re: Free Schools list for 2014

Postby Brian Jordan » Tue May 28, 2013 8:36 pm

The whole idea behind the BSI was to provide inspectors who wouldn't tread on the toes of the zealots running the schools. So as long as any extreme or loony teaching can be given religious clothing, I'd expect it to be ok'd.
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Re: Free Schools list for 2014

Postby cathy » Wed May 29, 2013 9:09 am

The whole idea behind the BSI was to provide inspectors who wouldn't tread on the toes of the zealots running the schools. So as long as any extreme or loony teaching can be given religious clothing, I'd expect it to be ok'd.

Agreed and until now very little could be done. The zealots were allowed to run schools as long as they were private and as long as they weren't breaking to many laws like beating children or cramming them into unsafe cupboards.

I'm still confused about the AMS tho. They seem to have the Al Hijrah school in Brum on their list! Both the high school and the primary one. Yet the high school moved into the state sector in 2002 (under Blair) and the primary school has just joined to the high school and become a state school. And that makes for very interesting reading as the ofsted inpsections for the high school have been carried out by real Ofsted and for the primary school by BSI until the last one in March 2013.

Al Hijrah high school (state sector) was mainly 3s (requires improvement - basically just above going into special measures) on its earlier inspection and moved to good (2s) in 2010. One of the things noted in its earlier real ofsted was the lack of progress of girls in maths (girls and boys educated separately).

The primary school however was inspected by BSI until the 2013 inspection, as it remained outside the state sector until then. The inspections seem to be good and, like CST schools, a good seemed to be dependent on the special zealotry section. The BSI report in 2011 gave much of the school good with outstanding features including teaching! However like the CST inspection reports that seems to be linked to the school
Meeting the expectations of the Association of Muslim Schools UK
(AMSUK)
The school’s religious ethos continues to meet the expectations of AMSUK.


However the complete school, primary and secondary were inspected by real Ofsted this March they'd gone from 2 back to 3 requires improvement and the whole report is pretty damning.

The confusing thing is why it is still on the AMS list (both schools) when one became a state school years ago and the other has just moved into the state sector? AMS is, like CST, more religiously motivated and Grindon Hall were told off for appearing on CSTs list after they became a state funded free school. So what is going on with AMS? I only looked at Al Hijrah as I'd heard of it (Brum) and therefore knew the high school wasn't private and hadn't been for some time. I don't know about the other schools but I'm guessing AMS are as creationist as CST. And three of the BSI inspectors inspecting in the past were CST members.

I'm quite confused now at state schools being on that list. Maybe the others need investigating as well?
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Re: Free Schools list for 2014

Postby Brian Jordan » Sat Jun 08, 2013 10:03 am

It now transpires that Academies - and so probably free schools - are a nice source of income for those in a position to milk them.
Exclusive: Academy chains take £9m from schools’ budgets as chiefs cash in Academy schools have taken millions from Yorkshire's budgets
EXPANDING academy chains have taken millions of pounds from Yorkshire schools’ budgets while paying their own top bosses higher salaries than the Prime Minister.

Figures obtained by the Yorkshire Post show that around £9m has been top-sliced in the past three years from primary and secondary academies in the region in order to pay for chains’ central services – which include wages of several chief executives who earned more than £150,000 and a director-general whose take home pay was around £280,000 a year.

Four of the biggest chains operating in Yorkshire – Academies Enterprise Trust (AET), E-ACT, School Partnership Trust Academies (SPTA) and Outwood Grange Academies Trust – have all paid their most senior figures salaries greater than the £142,500 earned by David Cameron.

Since the coalition Government expanded the programme in 2010, both the number of academies run outside of council control and the number run by academy chains has increased sharply in Yorkshire. There are now almost 300 academies in the region, with more than 60 schools operating within larger chains.
http://www.yorkshirepost.co.uk/news/all-sections/education/exclusive-academy-chains-take-9m-from-schools-budgets-as-chiefs-cash-in-1-5750823
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Re: Free Schools list for 2014

Postby jon_12091 » Sat Jun 08, 2013 7:26 pm

I'm under the impression that the academies budget in the DoE is completely blown and then some...
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Re: Free Schools list for 2014

Postby cathy » Wed Jun 12, 2013 4:14 pm

Looks like Grindon Hall is thriving since becoming a free school and that its initial motivation was financial. This is from an FT magazine article from March 22nd this year.
www.ft.com › Life&Arts‎Cached

http://www.ft.com/cms/s/2/df6f738a-90f2 ... z2W1Bgfqr6



The gist of it was that independent schools (it wasn't just Grindon Hall) were starting to struggle from the twin problems of recession eating into parents incomes and state schools improving so many started the switch to state funded free school and many parents with an eye on playing the system were scraping together one years fees to get into the schools before they became free working on the principle that existing pupils would not be made to leave afterwards even if they didn't satisfy the new state admissions criteria.

A bit of it was about Grindon Hall. It became clear why it was popular - it was in an area with not so good schools. The only interesting bit of the article for bcse was this bit.
http://www.ft.com/cms/s/2/df6f738a-90f2 ... z2W1Bgfqr6


Most pupils are not churchgoers but Gray describes the ethos as “biblical Christianity”. He considers the national curriculum to be “politicised, not helpful”, is keen on the English baccalaureate, on respect, manners and high expectations. “Children are given too many excuses for poor performance.” The traditional syllabus includes Latin. Biros are banned. If anybody brings in chewing gum, they are fined £5.

Not sure how "biblical Christianity" differs from the normal sort but it is interesting that the article was after BCSE noticed Grindon Hall was on the CST list and ensure the DofE knew and ensured it was removed. So what is biblical Christianity given that Grindon Hall have already claimed they are NOT creationists and have removed themselves from CST lists?
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Re: Free Schools list for 2014

Postby cathy » Wed Jun 12, 2013 4:36 pm

I'm under the impression that the academies budget in the DoE is completely blown and then some...

Yep so now they're stealing the cash from elsewhere! I could write reams and reams and reams (yes even more than I usually can) on this but none would be relevant or interesting - just check out the many articles written about the pay of academy headteachers for starters!!!!!!!! :evil: :evil: :evil:

A northern friend working for an LEA has informed me that oop there the LEA will have to re-absorb some academies that are now failing (having grabbed the cash and failed to manage it) despite having no money - cos you can't just leave 900 odd kids with no school. Another friend who works for Bham has said he'll refuse to help any failing academy (it was their choice). But as I say not particularly relevant.

Roger said somewhere he has a friend helping scientists find alternative employment, whoever sets up a business to re-deploy teachers trying to leave before 2015 when evil idiot Goves ambitious plans to return us to 1952 take hold (oh yes replacing A*, A, B, C, D with 8, 7, 6, 5, 4 will do loads to drive up standards and make us competitive and who needs Mary Seacole in history, Gove only learnt about Flo Nightingale after all - and of course who can forget that all novels written before or after the 19th century are incomplete meaning no child has ever learnt to read a whole book since 1901 :evil: ) will make a fortune. If teachers are re-employable of course. Good at being bossy and saying they're your exams your jeapordising not mine?

Still I guess we must be relieved Gove isn't prime minister - yet. Or in charge of health - tho tempted to set up a leach farm and pre soaked in chloroform hankie (so useful for amputations once we get rid of those modern standard lowering antibiotics) just in case he does.

Just realised none of that was relevant. Sorry
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Re: Free Schools list for 2014

Postby Roger Stanyard » Wed Jun 12, 2013 6:56 pm

cathy wrote:Looks like Grindon Hall is thriving since becoming a free school and that its initial motivation was financial. This is from an FT magazine article from March 22nd this year.
http://www.ft.com › Life&Arts‎Cached

http://www.ft.com/cms/s/2/df6f738a-90f2 ... z2W1Bgfqr6



The gist of it was that independent schools (it wasn't just Grindon Hall) were starting to struggle from the twin problems of recession eating into parents incomes and state schools improving so many started the switch to state funded free school and many parents with an eye on playing the system were scraping together one years fees to get into the schools before they became free working on the principle that existing pupils would not be made to leave afterwards even if they didn't satisfy the new state admissions criteria.



The FT article is interesting because it identifies the underlying harsh realities of the UK's permanent recession. The amount of money available for both private and public education in the UK is set to fall for another 7 years or so even if the current "austerity" policies "work". It frightens the crap out of me.
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Re: Free Schools list for 2014

Postby Brian Jordan » Wed Jun 12, 2013 7:59 pm

Roger Stanyard wrote:The amount of money available for both private and public education in the UK is set to fall for another 7 years or so even if the current "austerity" policies "work". It frightens the crap out of me.
Clearly there's a need to concentrate resources on subjects that matter, at all levels. Gove would no doubt say the same, but our lists might be rather different.
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Re: Free Schools list for 2014

Postby cathy » Mon Jun 17, 2013 11:31 am

Following on from the Woolwich article this was in Fridays TES

http://www.tes.co.uk/article.aspx?storycode=6339834

About Ofsted inspecting private schools for extremism and radicalisation. Wonder will it apply to BSI schools? Will BSI still inspect and what will Sylvs mob be expected to do as they have a lot to do with inspecting AMS schools and vice versa. And if they clamp down will ASM inspectors clamp down on them. Or will they just be left to go on as normal given Ofsted has discharged its duty of inspecting them for extremism by farming it out to extremists. Meh.
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