Elections? This month? About education? With policies, candidates, proper voting and everything? Overseen by the electoral reform services? Cool!
Yes, indeed, there are national elections taking place right now across England which will shape the education system in every part of the country.
I love elections, I want to see what policies are on offer and question the candidates. Show me my ballot paper.
Well, yes…before we all get too excited by this outbreak of democracy there is some small print.
These elections are for the new Headteacher Boards to advise the new Regional Schools Commissioners. Each board will have 6-8 members, 4 of whom will be elected.
Advise? So they’re not actually running anything?
No, just advising, but this is important stuff and the Regional Schools Commissioner will certainly take account of their views.
Important stuff? You mean overseeing the whole school system?
Not quite. Only those schools which are academies or planning to convert to academies.
OK, so can anyone stand for election to these important roles?
You’re joking. Only current or recently retired headteachers of outstanding academies or those rated outstanding for leadership.
I see. That narrows the field a bit. Still, I can’t wait to vote.
Ah, well, here’s the thing. You don’t actually have a vote unless you’re an academy headteacher yourself.
Cheer up though, this is a real election and it is the only democratic element in the new system.