One thing I have learnt since running our local anti-academy campaign is that when you are passionate about something, and communicating and talking to like minded people, it is easy to assume that the whole world will just fall into line and MUST feel the same way.
So when I do find someone who has a different perspective on academies, it now shakes me a little. It makes me realise that as well as talking, I must be listening and understanding too. The reality is that no party involved in our local campaign will walk away with everything they want. Compromises will have to be be made. The situation with falling roles and the pressure on schools to reach floor targets in a selective area makes our schools here very vulnerable to central government intervention.
Thus the next - and the most important part of our SOS work to date - is to meet with the heads and governing chairs of all the schools concerned. I am not sure how these meetings will go. I have no set agenda. I go with a set of deeply held and passionate values. But I go to listen, learn and find a genuine way forward. I recognise the integrity, standards and views of the other parties involved.
And this is why, yet again, I find myself angry at Gove. The following article highlights a clear problem with him - he is not listening, does not want to listen, has no intention of listening. He seems only to be talking with those who already agree with him.
Well, the whole world does not agree with you Mr Gove. And if you ever cared for a visit to Lincolnshire we would be more than happy to tell you why. And we will happily show you how you are destroying the Big Society that already exists here.
How I wish I was in London today :(