Almost 3,500 schools in England rated as “requiring improvement” face being forced into new leadership, under intends to be announced by David Cameron.
He will promise that when the Tories win the May general election they are going to tackle “coasting” schools which can be failing to make sufficient progress.
The prime minister will say: “We’re waging an all-out war on mediocrity.”
Labour’s Tristram Hunt claims raising standards depends upon making sure that schools have qualified teaching staff.
Teachers’ union leader Mary Bousted rejected the criticism of schools as “self-serving, publicity-seeking nonsense”.
“When will politicians stop declaring war on schools?” said the best of the ATL teachers’ union.
The prime minister’s proposals are built to improve standards – concentrating on schools using the Ofsted rating of “requires improvement”.
They would face having new leadership imposed – from “superheads”, high-achieving local schools or just being taken over by academy trusts. Struggling academies could possibly be switched for some other academy sponsors.
Schools labelled as “requires improvement” are on top of the lowest “inadequate” rating, but below the degree of “good” and “outstanding”.
Education Secretary Nicky Morgan told the BBC: “This just isn’t about saying heads would automatically be replaced.
“Where a faculty doesn’t have the capability to improve itself, and several do, or where they just don’t have a plan that’s going to lead to that school being rated good or outstanding, then one with the answers may be to get new leadership in.”
Almost one fourth of secondary schools, about 720 schools, are rated as requiring improvement. About 16% of primary, in excess of 2,600 schools, could well be affected from the proposals.
The intention is usually to “raise the bar” making sure that an even higher proportion of pupils are usually in good or outstanding schools.
“No-one wants their son or daughter to search for a failing school no-one really wants to them to visit a coasting school either,” Mr Cameron will say, in the speech describing Conservative education policy.
“‘Just enough’ isn’t good enough. That means you can forget sink schools and forget about ‘bog standard’ schools either.
“Our aim is: the very best start in life for each child, wherever they’re from – no excuses.”
The proposals being announced on Monday signifies schools rated as requiring improvement would automatically be considered for academy status.
Only schools capable to prove they use a “clear cover rapid improvement” will continue to be under their existing leadership.
Alasdair Smith, in the Anti Academies Alliance, challenged the assumption that turning a college into an academy would improve results.
“There isn’t a single scrap of evidence that academy status improves our education system and increasingly there is certainly plenty of evidence that it must be producing a chaotic education system,” he told BBC Radio 4’s Today programme.
Last week the cross-party House of Commons education select committee reported that there exists no clear evidence that academies had “raised standards overall”.
In particular the MPs said there was clearly no proof of improvement from primary academies and called about the government to commission research really should be urgency.
Schools which can be already academies and which belong to the “requires improvement” category face being removed from their existing academy chain and run by another.
Ofsted’s annual report shows that a lot more than a third of sponsored academies, both primary and secondary, are still rated as requiring improvement, a larger proportion than local authority schools.
Free schools which are usually in this rating is also handed over completely to another academy group.
The areas more likely being affected are those together with the highest proportion of pupils not attending “good” or “outstanding” schools.
For primary schools this can be Medway, Doncaster, Bracknell Forest and East Sussex.
At secondary level, Ofsted’s figures show it could be the Isle of Wight, Hartlepool, St Helens and Oldham.
The label “requires improvement” was designed by Ofsted Sir Michael Wilshaw, replacing what had previously been the “satisfactory” category.
Times table tests
On Sunday, head teachers’ leaders had reacted angrily to suggestions that primary schools could possibly be failed or heads replaced if any pupils did not pass oftentimes table test.
Mrs Morgan announced plans for tougher primary maths tests, including that each one pupils should know about their 12 times table.
Ministers announced couple of years ago that primary pupils will have to learn the 12 times table from the age of nine plus it became a requirement from the updated curriculum.
Mrs Morgan’s target is designed for England’s schools capture up with international competitors also to enter the top five from the PISA tests in English and maths by 2020.
But Russell Hobby, leader in the National Association of Head Teachers, attacked “this latest gimmick”.
“The new tests never have even been implemented before they need to change them,” he explained.
Mrs Morgan also indicated that she was hoping to defend the schools budget, with a future Conservative government.
But a report in the Liberal Democrats claims that inside negotiations at the outset from the coalition government last year, the Conservatives “tried to cut the faculties budget”.
The Lib Dems warn of “scorched earth plans” for future public spending cuts.
And shadow education secretary Tristram Hunt argued that this quality teaching was the important thing to raising school standards to check international competitors.
“Many parents will probably be shocked to find out that David Cameron’s government is different the rules allowing unqualified teachers to the classroom using a permanent basis, resulting in a 16% rise inside the last year alone,” said Mr Hunt.
“The surest strategy to raise standards in every single lesson, atlanta divorce attorneys school, is to increase the quality of teaching from the classroom. Labour will ensure that teachers are qualified and attempt to train to boost their teaching to be a condition to remaining inside the classroom.”