We are gathering signatories from local people and will send this open letter tomorrow.

Dear Editor,

We, the undersigned, are writing to express our profound concern at the Conservative government’s plans to force all schools to become an academy and thereby abolish any local-government accountability in our schooling system.

This measure threatens our democratic right to choose to send our children to local-government administered schools if we so wish.

It threatens the education of our children in non-academy schools as governors and teachers will now have to spend years on bureaucracy and red tape, instead of single-mindedly focussing on supporting all pupils to succeed.

It threatens the very existence of our smallest schools as they won’t be able to meet the financial criteria of academy status and will be forced to close.

It threatens the integrity of the entire state education system as we will end up with fragmentation, with no local oversight, and our taxation going to academy chains’ shareholder profit instead of into solving the teacher recruitment crisis. Is this the first step on the road to privatisation?

Our local MP, Neil Carmichael, is Chair of the Parliamentary Education Committee. We call upon him publicly to tell his constituents what his position is on this abuse of our democratic system for what appear to be ideological motives that have nothing to do with educational quality or our children’s well-being.

We also call upon all concerned citizens to write to the Prime Minister, the Education Secretary and your local MPs to express your total rejection of this outrageous attack on local democracy.

Yours etc.
Doina Cornell, Dr Richard House, John Marjoram, Skeena Rathor

and 100+ concerned local citizens