'Free schools' likely to remain tiny minority
05 Sep 2010
Michael Gove tried to sound upbeat about his prediction that some 16 'free' schools will open over the coming year.
Opponents have rightly pointed out that this falls far short of the earlier rhetoric. It also raises serious questions about the programmes that have been cut to release money for this experimental policy.
However, I think we should be grateful that this project is starting on a small scale. It means that by the end of this government's first term, 'free' schools will continue to be a tiny minority of the total, not unlike the City Technology College experiment of the late 1980s.
If they prove their worth, then it may be worthwhile building on the experiment -- if not, it can be quietly dropped without too much damage to the system.