Leader magazineASCL - Association of School and College Leaders

In the news

Whingers' charter

When the Children, Schools and Families Bill was announced in the Queen's Speech, ASCL labelling of the parent and pupil guarantees as a 'whingers' charter' was covered across the print media, including the Sun, Telegraph, Birmingham Post, Evening Standard, and Daily Mail.

General Secretary John Dunford was on Sky News and Deputy General Secretary Martin Ward appeared on BBC News 24, Radio 4's Today Programme and Radio 5 Drive Time.

John said: "School leaders are extremely concerned that these 'guarantees' will turn into a whingers' charter for the more litigious parents. This will create an immense amount of work for school leaders, who are currently trying, with government encouragement, to create more productive relationships with parents."

Vetting and barring

ASCL's concerns with the new vetting and barring scheme (see the article on page 4) were reported in the Guardian, Times, Telegraph, Daily Mail, Newcastle Journal, BBC Online and TES. All carried extracts from the letter sent to Secretary of State Ed Balls, signed by ASCL and six other school leader associations, expressing reservations about the amount of unnecessary bureaucracy and unintended consequences.

Efficiency savings

The DCSF's latest proposals in November to save money in education spending, primarily from more efficient procurement, met with some scepticism from ASCL.

The Times reported John Dunford as saying that it was far from clear that more efficient purchasing would save enough to protect schools and other services from possible spending cuts in the future. The Daily Mail and BBC quoted John as saying: "For the secretary of state to say that 300million would be saved by federating a third of schools is making the wrong case for federation. "Decisions to federate should be based on raising standards.

Savings cannot be made just through slimming down school leadership structures."

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