Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Tidemill - the mayor's initial response

Lewisham mayor, Steve Bullock, has written to Councillor Paul Maslin with his response to proposal to change Tidemill into an academy.  Here is the text of his letter as forwarded on 23 September 2010 and published here

Statement on Tidemill School
The performance of this school in recent years has been outstanding and the leadership given by Mark Elms has been of the highest order.  Lewisham Council has worked closely with the school to support it in achieving and consolidating that improvement.
The school has played an important role in its community and the way it has attempted to work not only with students but their parents too has been deeply impressive.  In part because of the schools success in working with the community it has been an integral part of plans to radically improve public provision in that part of the borough.  A new development is taking place which will include within it a new public library and community space that will be shared by the school and the community.
If the legal status of the school is changed and the ownership of that shared space brought into question this project may be at risk.  The Council will need to take legal advice on the implications of the school becoming an academy for such an large project involving public funding.
A number of academy schools already exist in Lewisham and they have played a critical role in enabling some under performing secondary schools to achieve significant improvement.  We work closely with these schools which are very clearly part of the Education Family in Lewisham where co-operation and mutual support have enabled us to improve faster than the majority of London boroughs.
At first sight I do not see any similar advantages arising from individual primary schools which are already successful opting for academy status.  The overriding objective that we have pursued relentlessly for the past 8 years has been to improve the life chances of our young people and no approach has been ruled and no partners excluded from our thinking as we strive to achieve that.
My approach to this remains pragmatic and if further academies will help move us forward I would be prepared to support them.  The onus must be on any school seeking academy status to demonstrate that they will be helping move that whole project forward not seeking advantage for an individual school at the expense of others.

That sentence - ''At first sight I do not see any similar advantages arising from individual primary schools which are already successful opting for academy status.''  fully echoes my own marmosettian view.  More importantly, it may be reassuring for parents uncertain about what the future holds  for Tidemill.


  1. I don't understand a word of this statement! Each sentence appears to contain contradictory statements! What's he on about?!

  2. How generous our Mayor is with regards the educational needs of primary school children, by sitting on the fence, he calls this a pragmatic view.

    I also seem to recall his own pecuniary matters, with regards to the setting up Lewisham Team Direct, a fore-runner on the so called housing repair systems that Lewisham Homes tenants have to deal with today.

    Did he not succumb to Tory pressure back in the 1980's and do what they demanded-which at the time was the hiving off Lewisham repairs services to the Councils housing stock, then to the private sector. And hey presto was he not the owner/director of Lewisham Teams Direct which took over the running of such afore- mentioned services? Did he not preside over a regime, that did everything the Tories asked of him et al? Did he not sit with an administration that wanted to penalise workers who went sick, by taking away their annual leave.

    To cut to the chase, there are several things going on, we have a Tory Government and yet again Sir Steve Bullshit, will be kow-towing to their agenda, he didn't become a "SIR" for nothing! With regards to the present climate, he is either looking for new self-aggrandizement to open new avenues of future profit for him and his cronies; or is pretending to sit on the fence because he is looking at how best to protect his interest, that money that Mark Elms earns- could be his profits been siphoned off!

    Let's face it they are tories in sheeps clothing, Lewisham Council, under Labour/New Labour have always been ahead of the game when it came to "privatisation". It is after all about lining their own pockets! and the Tories just facilitate this with their new Acts/Laws.

  3. Liking the comment - Looking like Legitimate Corruption to me again..!??
    Or just another opportunist Like Mr Elms and Joan Ruddock even!!

    Looks like fingers crossed for the Steve Nightmare - now lets hope the Anti Academy campaign does not get seduced by Steve Bullshit's...bullshit .... time to get the gloves off for me!

    Labour (Lewi) Sham! Get rid of these CRONIES!!!
    Am I to expect These guys are "Going to Help?"