The Confederation of School Trusts (CST) today launches its sector-led ‘white paper’ on the future shape of the education system in England at a conference for 200 trust leaders in Lancashire and West Yorkshire.

Coming at the end of the party conferences, the paper sets out a direction of travel and calls for all political parties work together with the sector to agree a long-term plan for education, to complete the reform journey which has its origins with the Labour administration at the turn of the century and has continued through the Conservative-Liberal Democrat coalition and successive Conservative governments.

Leora Cruddas, Chief Executive of CST will say: “I am delighted to announce today that the Confederation of School Trusts is publishing a sector-led ‘white paper’ on the future shape of the education system in England. We want to generate a conversation about system-building. This is first and foremost about children and creating a system that puts the substance of education first.
We are not proposing compulsory academisation. Academisation is not and has never been the panacea. I am talking about the power of a group of schools working together in deep partnership overseen by single governing board.

It has taken a ten-year horizon for schools to start to form groups. To complete this journey is likely to take another ten years. Therefore, the time horizon for the system to work towards all schools in a strong and sustainable group is probably 2030. And let me be clear, this is about focusing direction. It is not about compulsion.

The divisive language of MATs and SATs needs to go. We need to create a new language – the language of School Trusts as new civic structures. We need leaders who see a responsibility to work with other civic partners to advance education as a public good. Leaders who work with others to ensure the value of the child so that our collective actions protect high-quality education.”