Bradford principal speaks up for academies

Bradford Telegraph and Argus: Coun Ralph Berry Coun Ralph Berry

Every school should become an independent academy, says a Bradford principal, because Council schools cannot match their results.

Nick Weller, head of the five Dixons academies in the city, said local authorities lacked “democratic accountability” and should not oversee schools.

Instead, they should all be run by academy chains, which had proved – in Bradford and elsewhere – that they could turn around failing schools more quickly. Giving evidence to MPs, Mr Weller pointed to the success of Dixons Allerton, since it opened as an academy on the site of the failing Rhodesway School in 2009.

He said: “For 15 years it had been on the slide and had been in special measures for the longest time of any school in the country – from 2002 all the way through to 2006. It was a very, very different school. There’s no evidence that a local authority would have that impact.”

As well as Dixons Allerton, two other secondaries are part of the chain – Dixons City Academy, a former City Technology College, and Dixons Trinity Academy, a newly-opened ‘free’ school.

It also boasts two primaries, the Dixons Music free school and Dixons Marchbank, formerly Bradford Moor Community School.

Mr Weller is chief executive of The Bradford Partnership, the support group for all 31 secondaries in the city – both academies and local authority schools. He was giving evidence to the Commons education select committee, which is carrying out an inquiry into the exploding numbers of academies and free schools.

David Ward, the Liberal Democrat MP for Bradford East, who quizzed Mr Weller as a member of the committee, said he supported all schools having ‘academy freedoms’. But he added: “If Nick is suggesting that every single school should become an academy, then I disagree. That’s not the way forward.”

And Ralph Berry, Bradford Council’s executive member for education, said: “Mr Weller has a puritanical, ideological streak on this one.

Comments (14)

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9:05am Fri 11 Apr 14

Grumpygirl says...

Academies are the first step on the Tory road to privatisation. They want us all to pay for education so that the underprivileged will remain poor.
Academies are the first step on the Tory road to privatisation. They want us all to pay for education so that the underprivileged will remain poor. Grumpygirl
  • Score: 3

9:25am Fri 11 Apr 14

Andy_Bfd says...

"Ralph Berry, Bradford Council’s executive member for education, said: “Mr Weller has a puritanical, ideological streak on this one"
and why exactly is having a puritanical, ideological streak bad news for education of our young? Perhaps if Councillor Ralph Berry showed a puritanical and ideological streak then Bradford schools might move forward
"Ralph Berry, Bradford Council’s executive member for education, said: “Mr Weller has a puritanical, ideological streak on this one" and why exactly is having a puritanical, ideological streak bad news for education of our young? Perhaps if Councillor Ralph Berry showed a puritanical and ideological streak then Bradford schools might move forward Andy_Bfd
  • Score: -2

9:32am Fri 11 Apr 14

pcmanners says...

All education is an investment and should be paid for. Free education is just Socialist feather bedding. It encourages benefit scrounging because it gets kids used to the idea that some things in life are free. The next Conservative Government will do the right thing and privatise education along with the NHS.
All education is an investment and should be paid for. Free education is just Socialist feather bedding. It encourages benefit scrounging because it gets kids used to the idea that some things in life are free. The next Conservative Government will do the right thing and privatise education along with the NHS. pcmanners
  • Score: -13

9:40am Fri 11 Apr 14

sorrow&anger says...

Academies, along with the Iraq war, were not Blair's best idea. As King's and the Trojan Horse showed they're an open door to corruption and segregation. Especially in Bradford.
Academies, along with the Iraq war, were not Blair's best idea. As King's and the Trojan Horse showed they're an open door to corruption and segregation. Especially in Bradford. sorrow&anger
  • Score: 12

9:57am Fri 11 Apr 14

bd7 helper says...

once again RICH GETTING RICHER AND POOR GETTING POORER
once again RICH GETTING RICHER AND POOR GETTING POORER bd7 helper
  • Score: 6

10:00am Fri 11 Apr 14

Andy2010 says...

Grumpygirl wrote:
Academies are the first step on the Tory road to privatisation. They want us all to pay for education so that the underprivileged will remain poor.
God give it a rest

Who was it set up academies in the first place....yes thats right Labour

No not the evil Tories but Labour so shut it

End of the day this story whilst sad bears some truth in what he is saying as the academies especially Dixons ones are producing better results than the council run schools.
[quote][p][bold]Grumpygirl[/bold] wrote: Academies are the first step on the Tory road to privatisation. They want us all to pay for education so that the underprivileged will remain poor.[/p][/quote]God give it a rest Who was it set up academies in the first place....yes thats right Labour No not the evil Tories but Labour so shut it End of the day this story whilst sad bears some truth in what he is saying as the academies especially Dixons ones are producing better results than the council run schools. Andy2010
  • Score: -1

10:47am Fri 11 Apr 14

Simplecountryboy says...

How exactly do private corporations like Dixon's possess any democratic accountability?
How exactly do private corporations like Dixon's possess any democratic accountability? Simplecountryboy
  • Score: 6

1:48pm Fri 11 Apr 14

Apollo says...

You need to look at the history of where the original Dixons came from and when it came into being.

It was founded in 1990 as a CTC. It did not become and academy until 2005.

In the 1990 we have the Grant Maintained push which was one of the first to take schools out of local authority control.

Academies are a continuation of that push.

Dixons might be seen as a success, however, the other side of the coin is Kings with its corruption and sleaze.
You need to look at the history of where the original Dixons came from and when it came into being. It was founded in 1990 as a CTC. It did not become and academy until 2005. In the 1990 we have the Grant Maintained push which was one of the first to take schools out of local authority control. Academies are a continuation of that push. Dixons might be seen as a success, however, the other side of the coin is Kings with its corruption and sleaze. Apollo
  • Score: 8

2:23pm Fri 11 Apr 14

Grumpygirl says...

Andy2010 wrote:
Grumpygirl wrote:
Academies are the first step on the Tory road to privatisation. They want us all to pay for education so that the underprivileged will remain poor.
God give it a rest

Who was it set up academies in the first place....yes thats right Labour

No not the evil Tories but Labour so shut it

End of the day this story whilst sad bears some truth in what he is saying as the academies especially Dixons ones are producing better results than the council run schools.
We've had this conversation before. Like most Tories you don't listen.

Blair was not a socialist, he was a closet Tory. The failure of the last Labour government to deal with the evils of the Tory legacy (deregulated banks, privatised utilities, semi-privatised schools and NHS, destruction of the manufacturing base, etc.) is the reason the country is in the mess it is in today.

The Tories are the party of greed and inherited privilege. They have ruined our once great nation and will continue to do so until private companies completely run this country for their own benefit.
[quote][p][bold]Andy2010[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]Grumpygirl[/bold] wrote: Academies are the first step on the Tory road to privatisation. They want us all to pay for education so that the underprivileged will remain poor.[/p][/quote]God give it a rest Who was it set up academies in the first place....yes thats right Labour No not the evil Tories but Labour so shut it End of the day this story whilst sad bears some truth in what he is saying as the academies especially Dixons ones are producing better results than the council run schools.[/p][/quote]We've had this conversation before. Like most Tories you don't listen. Blair was not a socialist, he was a closet Tory. The failure of the last Labour government to deal with the evils of the Tory legacy (deregulated banks, privatised utilities, semi-privatised schools and NHS, destruction of the manufacturing base, etc.) is the reason the country is in the mess it is in today. The Tories are the party of greed and inherited privilege. They have ruined our once great nation and will continue to do so until private companies completely run this country for their own benefit. Grumpygirl
  • Score: 1

3:21pm Fri 11 Apr 14

BD16 says...

Grumpygirl wrote:
Andy2010 wrote:
Grumpygirl wrote:
Academies are the first step on the Tory road to privatisation. They want us all to pay for education so that the underprivileged will remain poor.
God give it a rest

Who was it set up academies in the first place....yes thats right Labour

No not the evil Tories but Labour so shut it

End of the day this story whilst sad bears some truth in what he is saying as the academies especially Dixons ones are producing better results than the council run schools.
We've had this conversation before. Like most Tories you don't listen.

Blair was not a socialist, he was a closet Tory. The failure of the last Labour government to deal with the evils of the Tory legacy (deregulated banks, privatised utilities, semi-privatised schools and NHS, destruction of the manufacturing base, etc.) is the reason the country is in the mess it is in today.

The Tories are the party of greed and inherited privilege. They have ruined our once great nation and will continue to do so until private companies completely run this country for their own benefit.
That's complete tosh. If Blair was the Tory you claim him to be, why did he allow Gordon Brown, as chancellor, go on a spending rampage that left the country on the brink of bankruptcy? If it hadn't been for the banks going belly up when they did we'd have been staring into the abyss like the other free spending economies of Europe.

Hardly a Tory policy, is it? Spending more than you can afford.
[quote][p][bold]Grumpygirl[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]Andy2010[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]Grumpygirl[/bold] wrote: Academies are the first step on the Tory road to privatisation. They want us all to pay for education so that the underprivileged will remain poor.[/p][/quote]God give it a rest Who was it set up academies in the first place....yes thats right Labour No not the evil Tories but Labour so shut it End of the day this story whilst sad bears some truth in what he is saying as the academies especially Dixons ones are producing better results than the council run schools.[/p][/quote]We've had this conversation before. Like most Tories you don't listen. Blair was not a socialist, he was a closet Tory. The failure of the last Labour government to deal with the evils of the Tory legacy (deregulated banks, privatised utilities, semi-privatised schools and NHS, destruction of the manufacturing base, etc.) is the reason the country is in the mess it is in today. The Tories are the party of greed and inherited privilege. They have ruined our once great nation and will continue to do so until private companies completely run this country for their own benefit.[/p][/quote]That's complete tosh. If Blair was the Tory you claim him to be, why did he allow Gordon Brown, as chancellor, go on a spending rampage that left the country on the brink of bankruptcy? If it hadn't been for the banks going belly up when they did we'd have been staring into the abyss like the other free spending economies of Europe. Hardly a Tory policy, is it? Spending more than you can afford. BD16
  • Score: 0

5:35pm Fri 11 Apr 14

RollandSmoke says...

The problem with our education system is that it is constantly being tinkered with by people with little idea what they are doing. It's a bit like taking your car to be fixed at a garage where they use a trainee mechanic who thinks they know what they're doing but ends the job with loads of nuts and bolts left over and who's put a bag of cement in the boot to weigh it down a bit. It may still run but it's no suprise if it isn't performing as well as it should. I don't believe that education and a profit motive will ever mix in a way that benefits the kids although I'm sure it will line a few pockets. Is that all that matters to the Tories or is having a well educated and productive next generation more important?
The problem with our education system is that it is constantly being tinkered with by people with little idea what they are doing. It's a bit like taking your car to be fixed at a garage where they use a trainee mechanic who thinks they know what they're doing but ends the job with loads of nuts and bolts left over and who's put a bag of cement in the boot to weigh it down a bit. It may still run but it's no suprise if it isn't performing as well as it should. I don't believe that education and a profit motive will ever mix in a way that benefits the kids although I'm sure it will line a few pockets. Is that all that matters to the Tories or is having a well educated and productive next generation more important? RollandSmoke
  • Score: 1

10:13pm Fri 11 Apr 14

gracie field says...

Why is it tory scum and supporter always start every comment with "labour started it"? who cares who started it you pathetic muppets?

what us decent (not tory scumballs and their @ssli. cker supporters btw) people care about is the tinkering and lack of positive change done by who is in charge right now.

andy are you a scumball tory mp by any chance - a very local one? every time mcevoy davis cameron and IDS open their fat lying traps they all too start off with blaming the previous party.

get over it and remember you tory scum have been at the wheel for years now and what a f...ing hash you have made of our country? you have put private companies in place off so many things which end up costing the tax payers far more money. all done in order to fill your best buddies (biggest private donations) coffers.

you put policies in place which only benefit the rich and blame it on the lazy no gooders when in reality it is only harming our disabled and most vulnerable people. you put private companies in place pretending it will save hard working tax payers money from the millions of lazy benefit criminals when in reality its costing them more due to using these useless and ineffective private companies!

you are all liars and cheats and blame every one else but yourselves for failing and that is disgusting but you have changed our laws so much none of you are ever held accountable for your devious sneaky behaviour. you back date new laws to enable to stop you paying out when people win against you sick puppies in court.

you change our laws to benefit who ever gives you the biggest "private donation" in fact you are lower in the chain than greedy scavengers because you even pick the bones of our dead (inheritance tax) and abuse vulnerable and disabled people.

most of us were brought up to help these vulnerable people but you scum prefer to pull the rug from under them then kick them when they are starving and down where no disabled person should ever go! you're policies are killing them yet you still support it.

you are the most hated party since Hitler and his murdering policies were in action.

i dont think we need say any more because the most educated of people are already well aware of your disgusting parties underhand murderous behaviours and legalisations. luckily for us non tory voters many of your previous voters also have seen you for what you are so next year will be your last for very many years.
Why is it tory scum and supporter always start every comment with "labour started it"? who cares who started it you pathetic muppets? what us decent (not tory scumballs and their @ssli. cker supporters btw) people care about is the tinkering and lack of positive change done by who is in charge right now. andy are you a scumball tory mp by any chance - a very local one? every time mcevoy davis cameron and IDS open their fat lying traps they all too start off with blaming the previous party. get over it and remember you tory scum have been at the wheel for years now and what a f...ing hash you have made of our country? you have put private companies in place off so many things which end up costing the tax payers far more money. all done in order to fill your best buddies (biggest private donations) coffers. you put policies in place which only benefit the rich and blame it on the lazy no gooders when in reality it is only harming our disabled and most vulnerable people. you put private companies in place pretending it will save hard working tax payers money from the millions of lazy benefit criminals when in reality its costing them more due to using these useless and ineffective private companies! you are all liars and cheats and blame every one else but yourselves for failing and that is disgusting but you have changed our laws so much none of you are ever held accountable for your devious sneaky behaviour. you back date new laws to enable to stop you paying out when people win against you sick puppies in court. you change our laws to benefit who ever gives you the biggest "private donation" in fact you are lower in the chain than greedy scavengers because you even pick the bones of our dead (inheritance tax) and abuse vulnerable and disabled people. most of us were brought up to help these vulnerable people but you scum prefer to pull the rug from under them then kick them when they are starving and down where no disabled person should ever go! you're policies are killing them yet you still support it. you are the most hated party since Hitler and his murdering policies were in action. i dont think we need say any more because the most educated of people are already well aware of your disgusting parties underhand murderous behaviours and legalisations. luckily for us non tory voters many of your previous voters also have seen you for what you are so next year will be your last for very many years. gracie field
  • Score: 1

12:03am Sat 12 Apr 14

RollandSmoke says...

Why no comments on this one although how it can be any mystery with the number of cctv cameras I counted on that crossing I don't know? I'd be interested in Andy's views but he'd probably just threaten to report me to the police for asking.
http://www.thetelegr
aphandargus.co.uk/ne
ws/11142834.VIDEO__P
olice_are_left_puzzl
ed_over_crash/
This guy has totaled a signpost and Firefighters had to do nothing more than disconnect the vehicle’s battery,
“It was just one of those where you think, ‘How did he do that?’”
But if you run a Tigra into one at 30-40mph they don't even bend in the slightest. I suppose your going to tell me it's an entirely different sort of pole or that despite the Tigra stopping dead as a write off the Tranny van is made of much sterner stuff?
Why no comments on this one although how it can be any mystery with the number of cctv cameras I counted on that crossing I don't know? I'd be interested in Andy's views but he'd probably just threaten to report me to the police for asking. http://www.thetelegr aphandargus.co.uk/ne ws/11142834.VIDEO__P olice_are_left_puzzl ed_over_crash/ This guy has totaled a signpost and Firefighters had to do nothing more than disconnect the vehicle’s battery, “It was just one of those where you think, ‘How did he do that?’” But if you run a Tigra into one at 30-40mph they don't even bend in the slightest. I suppose your going to tell me it's an entirely different sort of pole or that despite the Tigra stopping dead as a write off the Tranny van is made of much sterner stuff? RollandSmoke
  • Score: -1

10:06am Sat 12 Apr 14

Ratters Rat says...

Great idea not there will be no accountability in Bradford. The funding will come direct from central government. If parents had any concerns it would take far longer for complaints to be heard. The damage will have been done. There are some outstanding academy's in Bradford But we have seen in the press questions been raised about others.
Great idea not there will be no accountability in Bradford. The funding will come direct from central government. If parents had any concerns it would take far longer for complaints to be heard. The damage will have been done. There are some outstanding academy's in Bradford But we have seen in the press questions been raised about others. Ratters Rat
  • Score: 0

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