Around half of non-academy schools are likely to convert between now and 2022, a new report has revealed – suggesting that the Government’s plans to convert all schools may soon be realised.
The Academies Show, which published the survey, found that just a third of school leaders thought it was “not very likely” their school would convert by 2022.
Previously, the Department for Education (DfE) had said that all non-academy schools would need to convert by 2022. But later, it abandoned this approach after the number of schools converting fell out of pace with targets.
It then confirmed that schools rated “good” or “outstanding” could stay on under their local authority umbrella.
However, The Academies Show research has now found that a quarter of school leaders believe they are “very likely” to join or form a multi-academy trust (MAT) by 2022, while a further 38 per cent said converting by this time was “fairly likely”.
The report also found that just under two thirds (63 per cent) of schools to have recently converted had an overall positive experience.
In fact, just 12 per cent described the experience as negative.
Lucy McPhail, director of the Academies Show, said: “Our research has highlighted the key concerns that many maintained schools have with becoming an academy.”
The latest figures show that 71 per cent of state-funded secondary schools and a quarter (26 per cent) of primary schools have academy status.
A Department for Education (DfE) spokesperson, said: “As this survey shows, the majority of schools that have converted to become academies say it had a positive impact.
“By working in partnership with each other, schools can benefit from sharing staff, best practice and curriculum expertise. High-quality sponsors can also raise standards in underperforming schools, bringing fresh vision, strong leadership and clear accountability.”
At The Fish Partnership, we understand the day-to-day challenges schools and academies face. We can advise on the academy conversion process, and our expert team can also help you to assess your finances and achieve your financial targets. To find out more about the services we can offer to academies, please contact us.