Policy Briefing: Academy Schools

Research output: Other contribution


The introduction and expansion of new types of schools in England from the 1980s onwards is a radical reform of school provision. Academy schools are the latest example of how autonomy and the ‘independent’ school remain as the role model for provision within an emerging and complex market system. Evidence shows that improvement is varied, with cases of school failure repeatedly reported in the press. The impact of academisation through forced and planned conversions shows major changes to the purposes of education and the way schools are controlled and run as businesses. This briefing reports on research at Manchester University that sheds light on these issues. Our recommendations for policymakers are focused on the renewal of the purposes of public education, the redesign and enactment of local and national systems that enable coherence, and the need to draw on research that generates alternative ways of thinking about and undertaking public education. Our recommendations for researchers are to undertake more independent research into the privatization of education and its impact on the profession, children and communities, and to give attention to alternative ways of imagining and developing public education.
Original languageEnglish
TypePolicy Briefing
Media of outputOnline document
Number of pages8
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2015

Research Beacons, Institutes and Platforms

  • Policy@Manchester


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