Ash pearce - Labour Church Ward Councillor
Church's Labour Team, led by our Councillor Ashley Pearce

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Monthly Archives: September 2018

October events

ACE committee meeting: Ashley and Ruth will be in attendance at the Adult, Children services and education committee meeting on Thursday 4th October at 6.30pm at the Civic centre. Ashley will be presenting the new teachers Fair workload charter for teachers in Reading. 

Councillor’s advice surgery: Church Ward Councillors will be available to discuss any issues with residents on Saturday 6th October at 10.30am-12pm at The Whitley Café.

Canvassing; Councillors and activists will be out meeting residents to discuss concerns on Saturday 6th October at 11am on Birdhill Avenue and Sunday 7th October at 11am on Windemere Road & Barnsdale Road.

Full Council meeting: Church Ward Councillors will be in attendance at the Full Council meeting on Tuesday 16th October at 6.30pm at the Civic Centre. Ashley will be forwarding a motion regarding education cuts that can be found under Education on this site.

Newsletter delivery: The latest edition of the Church Ward Labour Rose newsletter will be delivered to every household across the Ward by our Councillors & volunteers. This can be viewed under the News section of this site.

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The accountability of Academy Schools

This week’s BBC Panorama programme focused on Academy schools in Britain. I am not going to be critiscing Academy schools as the huge majority are governed and run by hard working people seeking the best for the students that come through their doors.

It does give an opportunity to explain their relationship with the local Council however. Councils used to be able to open and run their own schools, this ended with the Tory Government in 2010. Academies are able to appoint their own Governors, set their own curriculum and admissions criteria with little oversight from the local Council. It is our job to monitor them and ask questions, but if something is not right, we have very little power to intervene. For academies, this is the role of the regional schools commissioner.

The commissioner for Reading is the South East commissioner whose role stretches from Milton Keynes to West Berks with all the academies in between. This encompasses hundreds of schools across a huge geographical area. I am not saying the old local authority system was perfect but a degree of local knowledge and democratic accountability has now been lost with the expansion of the Acadamies programme which has left our school system more open to manipulation as the programme explained.

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