Education Secretary Michael Gove has set the cat among the pigeons with his recent defence of the right of “free schools” to employ unqualified teachers and his call for the right to waive qualifications to be extended to all schools.
“How about unqualified brain surgeons/ airline pilots etc...” was typical of the furious reaction he engendered.
Apparently, his cavalier approach to qualifications extends to accountants and those who look after the books and ensure that schools are run efficiently and lawfully for the benefit of pupils.
The much-vaunted Kings Science Academy in Bradford, a flagship free school for Gove and Cameron, is in the headlines again, not for the quality of educational provision (damned in the latest Ofsted inspection) but for the alleged misuse of funds.
Fabrication of invoices, employment of various family members of the headteacher, school funding spent on clothing, the list goes on. The DFE knew about this for months before being forced to release details.
As Workers went to press, three men had been interviewed by West Yorkshire Police in connection with “fraud at a free school”. One man has got away with it. For now. ■