Free schools and the need for corporate governance

katiecpd - The 'business' of schools

Much has been made of free schools by the media recently, but not in a positive way. There have been high-profile cases of failures by this new breed of school which have led to critics claiming that the free school model is fundamentally flawed and that public support is collapsing. But is it possible that those failures are, in fact, instances of mismanagement that have arisen due to a lack of corporate governance and observation by the governors of their legal duties?

In a report published on 17 October 2013, Ofsted judged Al-Madinah Muslim free school in Derby to be inadequate after an inspection triggered by complaints including whistleblowing by the Headteacher. The school was claimed to be ‘dysfunctional’ and was providing an ‘unacceptably poor standard of education’.  As well as alleged equality breaches, the school was found to have breached ‘Health and Safety’ requirements by failing to verify the…

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