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CEP policy analysis
A Note on Academy School Policy
Stephen Machin and James Vernoit
July 2010
Paper No' CEPPA011:
Full Paper (pdf)

Tags: schools; education; academies

The Academies programme set up under the Labour government, beginning in 2002, has so far given Academy status to 203 English secondary schools. These schools were more significantly disadvantaged in terms of pre-Academy GCSE attainment, free school meal, special educational needs and ethnic minority status. The new coalition government has written to all headteachers asking if they are interested in Academy status, to which 1560 schools have responded positively. Schools that have expressed an interest, contrary to the current Academies, are characterised by having a more advantaged pupil population (lower free school meal, special educational needs and ethnic minority status) and superior GCSE attainment. If it follows the expression of interest route to awarding Academy status to schools, the new coalition government's policy on Academy Schools is not, like the previous government's policy, targeted on schools with more disadvantaged pupils. The serious worry that follows is that this will exacerbate already existing educational inequalities