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Andy Burnham MP, Labour’s Shadow Education Secretary,
commenting on warnings from a senior Tory of two-tier school system, said:

"Kent County Council Leader, Paul Carter, is absolutely right to warn of a two-tier system. Funding for the academies programme is in disarray and with a review underway, schools cannot be sure what the financial picture will be for them if they convert. There should be a level-playing field when it comes to school funding not an unfair system where some schools receive more than others.

"He is also right to warn about the highly centralised school system that Michael Gove is creating. Labour's academies brought about transformational change and drove up standards in schools in some of the poorest areas of the country. In contrast, Gove's academy programme is simply taking schools away from local control and putting them in the direct control of the Secretary of State.

"Parents and teachers are becoming increasingly concerned that academy conversions are being railroaded through. The Government should give clear guidance that schools must consult with local communities and take their views into account when considering conversion. Michael Gove seems obsessed with structural changes to schools which are a distraction from the real issues of how to raise standards in every school and equip our young people for the challenges of the modern world."

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