Are local authorities the ‘missing link’?

Local authorities could be the missing link in a system of autonomous schools, according to two research reports into effective school improvement published by the Association of Directors of Children’s Services. Both reports highlight concerns among head teachers, governors and local government officials that there are risks involved in increasing school autonomy. They identify where local authorities have been successful in supporting school improvement in the past, and how that work is changing in response to national policy and budget restrictions. In particular, the reports explore:

  • What are the characteristics of an effective local authority school improvement service?
  • What are the implications for school improvement of increased numbers of academies and free schools?
  • What kind of middle tier is needed for the next five years?
  • How will local authorities need to change if they are to fulfil that role?

They include case studies of successful local authorities and examples of the different models of school engagement that are emerging.

Source: The missing link: The evolving role of the local authority in school improvement (2012), ADCS

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