More than 160 excellent academy headteachers have applied to help the new regional schools commissioners provide support to almost 4,000 academy schools across England.
Nominations for the new headteacher boards (HTBs) closed on 13 June and figures released today show 164 headteachers applied. The elections start on 23 June and close on 11 July.
The news came the day after the 8 new regional schools commissioners for England met with Schools Minister Lord Nash to discuss the future of the academies programme. The commissioners are due to take up their posts in September when they will work closely with the national Schools Commissioner, Frank Green, and Education Secretary, Michael Gove.
The regional schools commissioners will champion academies’ autonomy and independence. They will also provide a more effective failure regime which can step in swiftly when academies are struggling. These decisions are currently taken in the Department for Education but in future they will be made by the commissioners, with the support of HTBs. Their combined local knowledge will mean they can make better informed decisions on when and how to intervene.
School Minister Lord Nash said:
I am delighted that so many outstanding headteachers want to join the new headteacher boards.
They recognise the crucial role the boards will play in shaping the future of the academies programme.
I am confident that, with the support of outstanding headteachers, the new regional schools commissioners will help raise standards, champion academy freedoms, and ensure there is swift intervention when things go wrong.
The number of academy schools has increased dramatically since May 2010 when there were just 203 academies. Latest figures for June show there are now almost 4,000 academies overall. Fifty-eight per cent of secondary schools are now academies and 12% of primaries are academies.
Regional schools commissioners’ responsibilities will include:
taking decisions on the creation of new academies on behalf of the Education Secretary
monitoring their performance and improving underperforming academies
ensuring there is a strong supply of excellent sponsors to work with underperforming schools in the region
All members of the HTBs will be excellent headteachers with local knowledge and expertise. Four members of each HTB will be elected by their peers while 2 will be appointed by the RSC.
Schools Commissioner Frank Green said:
All the regional commissioners are outstanding leaders who have a proven track record of transforming education.
Supported by HTBs, they will be the powerful voice for education in their area, helping academies to thrive so that even more pupils can benefit from the success of the academies programme.
The 8 regional schools commissioners are:
|Paul Smith (Lancashire & West Yorkshire)
|Janet Renou (North)
|Dominic Herrington (South London & South East)
|Martin Post (North West London & South Central)
|Pank Patel (West Midlands)
|Sir David Carter (South West)
|Dr Tim Coulson (North East London & East of England)
|Jenny Bexon-Smith (East Midlands & Humber)
Find out more about the HTB elections.