“Parents are being “left in the dark” over who really runs schools in England, according to parliament’s education committee. It has called for the government to overhaul the oversight of academy chains after a string of high-profile failures.
Robert Halfon, the Conservative MP who chairs the committee, signalled to the the new education secretary, Damian Hinds, that the system of regulation had created overlaps and confusion, allowing some multi-academy trusts (Mats) to escape oversight.
“We are particularly concerned by the extent to which failing trusts are stripping assets from their schools. It is not clear to us that all schools are benefiting from joining Mats, or that trusts are providing value for money,” Halfon said in a letter to Lord Agnew, the academies minister.”
“Private probation companies responsible for supervising more than 200,000 offenders in England and Wales face total losses of more than £100m, even after a £342m “bailout” by the Ministry of Justice, MPs have been told.
Ministry of Justice officials acknowledged on Wednesday that 14 of the 21 community rehabilitation companies were expected to make losses ranging from £2.3m to £43m by 2021-22, partly due to a sharp fall in the number of offenders being sentenced to community punishments.
Details of the state of the part-privatisation of the probation service – introduced by Chris Grayling when he was justice secretary in 2015 – were revealed during a Commons public accounts committee session. MoJ officials declined to comment on whether outsourcing was “an appropriate model” for probation services when pressed by Labour MPs, saying that it was a political question.”