Academies are able to allocate time for teachers’ learning and development, including training days, at the most suitable time for the academy and its staff, including outside an academy’s published term time.
Given the inconvenience to some parents when in-service training days are simply tacked on to the half-term holiday, does my hon. Friend agree that the evolution of academies and free schools provides an opportunity to see how we can better match the training needs of teachers to the school year?
My hon. Friend makes a very good point. Of course, one advantage of academies is the flexibility that they can offer in training their teaching staff. Of course, that is also an advantage for the pupils and their parents, who may have to make arrangements for child care when training days are taken during term time. That flexibility is available to academies, and I hope that it will benefit everybody.