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Governance of academies in England: the return of “command and control”?

West, Anne ORCID: 0000-0003-2932-7667, Wolfe KC, David and Yaghi, Basma B. (2023) Governance of academies in England: the return of “command and control”? British Journal of Educational Studies, 72 (2). pp. 131-154. ISSN 1467-8527

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Identification Number: 10.1080/00071005.2023.2258191


School-based education in England has undergone significant changes since 2010, with a huge expansion of academies, schools outside local authority control, funded directly by central government. Academies and local authority (LA) maintained schools are subject to different legislative and regulatory frameworks. This paper focuses on the governance of LA maintained schools, single academy trusts (SATs) and schools that are part of multi-academy trusts (MATs). The research involved analysing legislative provision, policy documents, and documents addressing the governance arrangements of a sample of 23 secondary schools. Our findings reveal a fragmented state-funded secondary school system as regards overall governance, school admissions, the curriculum, and the use of funding. Significantly schools in MATs, which are governed by the trust board, lack the autonomy of either SATs or maintained schools and are instead under the ultimate control of the trust board. The paper argues that there is a need for greater consistency regarding the governance of state-funded schools.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: © 2023 The Author(s)
Divisions: Social Policy
Subjects: L Education
Date Deposited: 06 Sep 2023 10:30
Last Modified: 08 Jul 2024 00:09

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