Trojan Farce

The date escapes us but papers were served and the Academy formed.  Lets quickly summarise the Trojan:

  1. Academies can opt out of the national curriculum.
  2. Academies can free themselves from the control of local authorities.
  3. Academies can change the times of the school day and term time.
  4. Academies can change the pay and conditions of service of their teachers.
  5. Academies can get more money.
  6. Academies can decide how to spend their money.

You know what else they’ll say: synergy, co-operation, collaboration, excellence, control, performance, expectation, etc, etc..

Hang-on this doesn’t sound too bad does it.  What can go wrongLets look at the Farce:

  1. The term dates get changed in an Academy Chain with around 2490 pupils in total, only 30% of which in year 7 are actually from the Primary feeder schools.
  2. Academies are given £25,000 to pay for the legal costs of conversion. Local authorities also have to pay for these costs out of Council Tax revenue.
  3. We’re glossing over several other aspects of this here…

Given that so few pupils in year 7 are from the Primary Schools in the Lumen Christi Academy there is going to be a disproportionate affect (negative)  on the Families whose children attend Local Authority schools or whose parents work in them! Leap forward a few millennia and the decision wouldn’t look out of place in the dark ages where it was every-man for himself!

Undoubtedly the worst aspect of academy conversion is the direct effect on parents and the family.

Note of interest > There are 2 Government petition running asking to Hold a public inquiry and a referendum over turning all schools into academies and another to Scrap plans to force state schools to become academies.


Parents of Lumen Christi Academy

Please consider following this blog Parents at Lumen Christi to get updates to your email inbox. You can also find them on twitter and facebook.

They have lots of interesting news and information about the Lumen Christi decision to change the terms dates.  Have a look at this timeline.

Parents can you request the support of your local Ward Councillors?

The wheels of the big institution move slowly – one week back and still no word from the Principals or Board members of the Lumen Christi Academy.   No one can find board minutes and no one knows when the next board meeting is. The board has been sent petitions with almost a combined total of 300 signatures on them.

We just want our voice heard but given the way the Academy has acted/enforced this decision we are under no illusion that we will need the support of our community to get the MAC to listen to our concerns.

We are asking that you email YOUR local Councillor requesting they make representations to the Board of Lumen Christi Academy about the change of the Christmas terms dates and include a link to the petitions in your email.  So for example perhaps you could cut and paste this and email it to your local Councillor….

Dear Councillor,

I am writing to inform you of a decision that has been taken at the Lumen Christi Academy to change the Christmas Holiday Term Dates.

As your constituent, whose children are at [INSERT SCHOOL NAME] will be affected by the alteration of the term dates I can confirm this will make life very difficult for, a lot of parents who have children at one of the many other Birmingham primary or secondary schools NOT within the Lumen Christ MAC, teachers or staff who work in other LA schools will have problems, and parents who have fixed term contracts where the Terms and Conditions will not be as flexible will be considering their options.

We also believe that this decision will also have an impact on LA schools within Birmingham.

The following petitions have been setup by the parents of the schools. We urge you to read the comments from some of the parents of the schools.

Many Thanks

A list Councilors is below, if you live in a ward that is not listed below you can find yours here

Bournville Ward Councillors

Phil Walkling
Telephone 0121 303 2039

Rob Sealey
Telephone 0121 314 8903

Timothy Huxtable
Telephone 0121 303 2130

Kings Norton Ward Councillors

Valerie Seabright
Telephone 0121 303 2039

Simon Jevon
Telephone 0121 303 2130

Peter Griffiths
Telephone 0121 303 2039

Northfield Ward Councillors

Brett O’Reilly
Telephone 0121 303 2039

Randal Brew
Telephone 0121 475 8246

Debbie Clancy
Telephone 0121 475 9130

Selly Oak Ward Councillors

Karen McCarthy
Telephone 0121 303 2039

Changese Khan
Telephone 0121 303 2039

Brigid Jones
Telephone 0121 303 1077

Bournville Ward

Ever felt like a deflated football being kicked around in some back street by a bunch of kids?

Well good news everyone!  Councillor Timothy Huxtable has contacted Ask St Josephs Parents to confirm that he will be making a representation on behalf of his constituents to the board of the Lumen Christi Academy on their decision to change the Christmas term dates.

The contact details for Councillor Timothy Huxtable are below.

Councillor Timothy Huxtable
Postal Address Council House
Victoria Square
West Midlands
B1 1BB

100 Signatures later…

During a busy week for parents we have still managed to get 100 signatures on our petition asking that the Lumen Christi Academy Board of Directors  reverse its decision to change the term dates at Christmas.  This obviously means a lot to people as that’s an average of 14 signatures per day over the last 7 days.

The issue has been in the the press again in the Birmingham Mail which highlighted the petition organised by a parent at St Brigids Catholic Primary School in Northfield – this petition has nearly 200 signatures.

As it is half term we understand why we have not heard from the Lumen Christi Academy but we all want an answer on this next week. We wait their response!

Here are some quotes from the petition …

Well isn’t the MAC of to a good start!? Fine example of integrity, accountability and transparency-just as predicted!

I work hard all year & want to spend my full Christmas holiday with my full family. But as I have 3 children in different 2 schools with different Christmas term dates this won’t happen!  How are the academy allowed to do this without consulting parents first? surely it’s against all Catholic & family values ? I am so disappointed in our school after all the support & loyalty we showed as parents during the recent special measures status. We stood by the school then & want them to stand by us now & reverse this decision.


A decision made about the Christmas school holidays without parent consultation is discraceful. I value every work free day spent with my children and to hear this will be shortened over the Christmas holiday is causing me great concern.

My husband and I need our children to have holidays when we have holidays. We try to be with our children whenever they are not in school and the new dates will completely affect our holidays for the worse. Please, take this petition into consideration.

Have signed both petitons. I believe this to be an underhanded way to boost applications to STACS. Some parents have children in other catholic schools not in this MAC! Bring on the unauthorised attendances. That effects your targets not ours!

If you feel your voice has not been heard you can write directly to the directors and secretary (as of Feb 2016) of the Lumen Christi Academy Board below using this email address:

  • Director Peter John Vince.
  • Director  Peter John Middleton.
  • Secretary Hollie Parrish.
  • Director  John Carr.
  • Director Mary Margaret Daniels.
  • Director  Adam Hardy.
  • Director  David Holmes.
  • Director  Clare Madden.


Happy Christmas – Lumen Christi Catholic Multi-Academy

Parents of St Josephs Catholic Primary School have discovered through the local newspaper, The Birmingham Mail , that the  MAC (Lumen Christi Catholic Multi-Academy) has changed the Christmas Holiday Terms Dates from December 16 – January 3 to December 21 – January 9.

Across Birmingham many Schools are guided by Birmingham City Council as to when school holidays take place and common sense prevails so most Schools and Academies follow this guidance.

However the MAC has come to the conclusion that they need to change this for the benefit of all – well at least those schools in the MAC.  To-date the parents have not had formal notice of this change so we are unsure on what basis the decision was made or what the benefits will be for the families involved. The article in the Mail refers to ‘a range of factors’, ‘to focus on Advent’ and ‘the benefits of cheaper holidays outside of the normal school holiday periods’ were behind the decision taken by the Principals at all six schools.

Further more it is alarming that the Principals did not feel the personal responsibility to contact the parents first about this matter.  Decisions made like this just fit the Academy Glove!

OK. Consider this MAC:

  1. You have one child in one school with one set of terms dates and another in a school with a different set of term dates.
  2. You work in school with one set of term dates and your child / children are in another school with a different set of terms dates.
  3. You are a single parent with 1 or 2.
  4. You or your partner are on a  short term contract or are self employed with 1.
  5. The holiday period stretches from 2 weeks to 3 weeks if you are in 1 or 2.
  6. Can you cram in all the extra work to earn an additional 8 days off in lieu so you can cover your child care.
  7. Just to keep your employer happy your January – December work-life-balance agreement has a stuttered start!

So as you can see, a quick blast, and we’ve racked up 6 or 7 issues that family’s at St Josephs will have to face.

Notwithstanding the numerous personal family issues surrounding a decision like this – Santa better bring some child care for the parents!

If you feel this is an issue for you please contact the school and make your concerns heard.

If the devil can’t make us really bad, then he’ll try and make us really busy!

To quote Craig Groeschel “If the devil can’t make us really bad, then he’ll try and make us really busy!”

If there are any parents who cant make the meeting on Monday @6pm and have any concerns about St Joseph’s becoming part of a MAC or any other issues they want to address to the new head teacher and IEB please feel free to email askstjosephsparents @ and we will submit these to the school as they have requested.

Your email address will remain confidential to us and the question will be submitted from Ask St Josephs Parents.

Alternatively just fill in the form below…