An academy trust dubbed one of the early “untouchables” has been issued with its fourth government warning notice. The Basildon Academies trust was handed a financial notice to improve, published today, over a forecast budget deficit. The deficit figure is not published. It’s the fourth such warning notice issued to the trust or one of its schools since 2012. Schools Week reported in 2015 that academies minister Lord Nash had admitted some of the early trusts were “untouchable” – a label critics attached to Basildon. Nash said early funding agreements had blocked the government from delivering “strong and swift” intervention in some underperforming academies. After “unacceptably low” GCSE results in 2012, former schools minister Lord Hill issued Basildon its first notice. Hill said it was vital governors “consider joining a successful sponsor chain” to drive improvement. The trust was then issued a second notice – a full warning notice in June that year – which stated standards were still unacceptably low. A third notice was then issued by regional schools commissioner Tim Coulson in September 2014 over continuing poor attainment. Today’s notice to improve focuses on the trust’s finances. The Education Funding Agency said it “remains concerned” by the size…http://schoolsweek.co.uk/basildon-academies-trust-issued-fourth-government-warning/
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