Do Darell’s results make the case for a takeover by “Every Child Every Day”?


Darell’s governors decided to publish some results today. A strategic move given that in two days’ time Maggie Bailey is coming to tell you how  “Every Child Every Day Academy Trust” ‘will improve your child’s education’?!  Why is joining a MAT the key to ‘raising standards’?

It is not necessary to do Darell down. When school results are reported responsibly, they give a full picture, including details such as…

  • full and clear information about progress over time rather than a snapshot
  • important information about how many of the children were new to the school, had special educational needs, speak English as an additional language, had moved from countries where Year Two was their first year of formal schooling, etc etc
  • context about the year itself (for example, Darell lost three members of staff due to maternity leave, another to long-term sickness and underwent the transition to a new head teacher)

…which make the numbers make sense. This is not what happened today. In case it happened, the parent consultation group specifically requested that the results letter show this information, as in previous years. For some reason, this was ignored on the day the governors decided to finally start selling the case for “Every Child Every Day”.

While this year will be different, we should remember that there are many ways to make the teaching and learning at Darell as wonderful as we all know it can be. But there are no silver bullets.

This year, the London School of Economics researched whether academisation actually improves results, as opposed to making noises about it. The answer was that there is often a short-term “blip” of higher results, followed by “back to zero” in the years following.

As with the financial issue (read more here), permanently handing control of Darell to one particular “Multi-Academy Trust” is one option, but it may not be the best option.

It should certainly not be the only option.


From the National Governors Association: Forming or Joining a Group of Schools: staying in control of your school’s destiny

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