Gove supports Oxford training courses

Education Secretary Michael Gove this weekend cited training courses at Oxford as part of a “great deal” for schools that switch to academy status.

In a speech at an education conference held at Wellington Academy, Wiltshire, Gove said: “Every month more and more great professionals are teaching in academies, and despite scare stories, those teachers are getting a great deal.”

But Russell Hobby, the General Secretary of the National Association of Head Teachers was unimpressed by Gove’s offer: “Teachers should be paid a good basic wage and then it should be left up to them what they spend this on.”

The Oxford training was cited, as well as private health care and training from Cambridge and Harvard. This followed criticisms from unions that academy status could represent a threat to teaching pay and conditions, which Gove dismissed as “nonsense”.

The Harris Federation, which funds nine academies in London, links with Harris Manchester College. A spokesperson said: “Through the Federation’s link with Harris Manchester College, special learning days are put on for teachers in English, maths and science.  Harris Manchester organises these days, and delivers leading world experts to talk to Academy teachers about the subject areas that interest them.”

However a first year History student said: “The University should not be investing money in a system that since its inception has shown it has little effect in improving schools’ performance.”