Budget power! Making the most of your academy status
George Osborne has now delivered his 8th Budget since becoming Chancellor and it would appear that yet more changes are afoot for English schools. Whether you support or dislike what he had to say about all schools becoming academies, what are the real consequences for your community and how can you respond positively to “to the opportunities and challenges that lie ahead?
The Chancellor has made it clear that the Government wants every state-funded primary and secondary school in England to be an academy by 2020, or have plans to do so by 2022. Whilst the details about how this will happen are still emerging, many schools and colleges across the country will be considering what the future holds.
Everyone is in agreement that the changes constitute a dramatic reorganisation of the way schools are managed. Currently 61% of secondary schools have already converted to academy status, but only 15% of primaries have done so.
David Cameron has made no secret of the fact that he wants schools in England to be placed in the hands of headteachers and principals (rather than politicians), who know their pupils and community and, therefore, are best placed to govern and control.
At the present time, according to the most recent OECD findings (May, 2015), Asian countries dominate the global education rankings with the UK coming a disappointing 20th. The complete overhaul of the education system in England is the Government’s response to driving up standards and create more opportunities for pupils, to better prepare them for work and life.
Academies have more freedom to innovate
So, what does all this mean for your school? Becoming an academy and managing your new freedom will take time. You and your staff will need to develop new skills across the board from management and business, to finance and marketing. The fact remains that it’s a fantastic opportunity to re-brand, to innovate and to create an exciting environment where expectations are high and youngsters go on to achieve great things.
Schools need help
Change is often challenging and schools need to enlist the help and support of those around them if they are to thrive.
INCO Education is a full-service marketing, design and communications agency dedicated to helping schools grow, lead and prosper in today’s education climate.
We’re a bit different to most. We understand the enormous challenges that academy converts face. Whilst we provide all of the usual services from re-branding, web, digital and marketing collateral, we’re also experts in school leadership and organisational growth. It’s about forming strong, long-term relationships with the people that need us and offering them access to our wider suite of expertise. This includes, implementing organisational improvements, leadership guidance, coaching and mentoring, employee development (including recruitment and selection), growth strategy, psychometrics and 360-degree feedback.
The Government has also set aside £1.5bn to fuel an extra ‘five hours’ of teaching/activities each week. This will allow a good proportion of schools to offer pupils more extra-curricular activities such as sport and art. There are also plans to review whether studying maths should be compulsory until the age of 18.
Is your school ready to respond to the budget? Contact INCO Education on 01902 784800 to find out how we can help.