In a major concession, the government has said that good or outstanding schools will no longer be forced into becoming academies. This means that Hampstead School will no longer have to convert to academy status by 2020.
That said, where a council is judged to be consistently under-performing its schools might be compelled to become academies, or where a handful of schools are left in a local authority area that haven't already converted. However, Camden Council currently have a large number of schools, all but one not being academies, that consistently perform well, so this seems an unlikely course.
The move comes after threatened industrial action by headteachers against the plans. Education Secretary Nicky Morgan MP said: "We don't think it's necessary for there to be a blanket provision for schools to covert (sic) to become academies," after it was deemed unlikely that the initial plans would make it past a parliament vote. "This is about being a listening government and I would consider myself to be a listening secretary of state."
She said that it was "better to have reforms than have none at all", evidently having never heard of the old adage 'if it ain't broke, don't fix it'. "We absolutely support those strong local authorities where schools are good and outstanding - they can make the choice to convert."
The plans still mean that schools that fall short of Ofsted expectations, but may be valued for their sense of creativity and community, will still have to convert to academies.