17 March 2015
Commenting on Extremism in schools: the Trojan Horse affair, a report by the Education Select Committee published today, Christine Blower, General Secretary of the National Union of Teachers, the largest teachers' union, said:
"The Education Committee report about Trojan Horse offers important warnings that stretch further than the issue of how to prevent extremism.
"The report poses pressing questions about the confusion and chaos created by the Coalition government in relation to the oversight of schools. The report lays bare the pitfalls of the new landscape. It is the latest in a string of recent cross-party reports slamming the approach to school oversight and governance adopted by the Department for Education.
"The DfE is urged by the Education Committee to keep new arrangements for school oversight under review. The DfE is accused of ignoring the problems created by its new school landscape with different schools, different oversight arrangements - a simply unnecessary and indefensible level of fragmentation.
"Teachers want the DfE to do more than 'keep arrangements under review'. Teachers want all schools re-united in one coherent universal education service. Teachers want school inspection processes which are challenging and constructive but accurate and fair - reporting only on what can be seen, without political bias or interference.
"Teachers will vote for MPs in May that pledge change on school inspection and that promise stability on school oversight. Teachers and young people would benefit equally from a return to local democracy in all oversight arrangements for publically funded schools."