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Q&A with The Rt Hon. David Laws

In the run up to The Academies Show on April 26th 2017, we are asking a number of our speakers for their thoughts and opinions on the academies and wider education sector, and what the future may hold for those in teaching, and other education roles.



Hear from The Rt Hon. David Laws, Former Minister of State for Schools and Executive Chairman of the Education Policy Institute (EPI)




In light of the EU referendum, what are the biggest challenges and opportunities facing the sector in the coming years?

  • The pressure on finances.
  • Recruitment challenges and retention.
  • The need to spread education success outside high performing areas such as London.
  • Narrowing the disadvantage gap in the early years.

The Government is due to release its proposals for reforming the school system. What do you hope/ expect for these proposals?

  • We need a coherent vision explaining how the new school led system will operate and defining the role of MATs/LAs/Ofsted/RSCs.

In the recent influential PISA tables by the OECD the UK made little progress in international rankings since results three years ago. What do you think we can learn from other international education systems?

  • The importance of developing our teacher workforce.
  • The scope for reducing the disadvantage gap.

What do you think the sector will look like in 5 years’ time?

  • More schools operating in groups of schools.
  • Pressures from continuing public sector austerity.

Finally, what is the one message that you would want visitors to take away with them from the Academies Show London 2017?

  • The Academies programme in the UK is now quite mature but the “school led” system has much further to develop.

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