Spinners at the Department for Education have distributed material claiming that a spoof plaque mocking Michael Gove was a “physical attack” on a primary school which “frightened parents and staff”.
The extraordinary suggestion, made in a press release distributed yesterday, forms part of desperate attempts to smear parents who object to their child’s school being converted to an academy.
The ‘notes for editors’ accompanying information about the government’s new powers to ignore parents includes the following quote from academy chain boss Sir Dan Moynihan regarding a primary school in Tottenham:
“Such was the hostile atmosphere, the building was physically attacked from the outside several times once the academy was open.
“This aggression was obviously frightening for parents and staff, but we are delighted that it did not make an iota of difference to the success of the academy, which thrived from day one.
Apparently this campaign of intimidation includes, errrrr, taking the mickey out of Michael Gove and Tory peer Lord Harris, who sponsors the Harris Federation academies, with a sign that reads:
“Here stood Downhills Primary Community School 1901-2012 … Taken from us by Michael Gove (Conservative) … Passed to his friend Lord Harris (Conservative)
In fact, this glazed pottery disc was deemed so “frightening for parents and staff” that it was never reported to the police.
Information obtained from the Met indicates by Scrapbook points to at least one (and possibly two) genuine instances of anti-academy graffiti occurring in the two months after the school re-opened in September 2012. No one was ever arrested, however, and there is no evidence that the perpetrator(s) were involved in the official anti-academy campaign.
‘Help! … The pottery class is coming to get us!’