Green candidate reacts to anti-academy votes at Hove Park School

Christopher Hawtree is the Green Party parliamentary candidate for Hove
Christopher Hawtree is the Green Party parliamentary candidate for Hove

Christopher Hawtree has reacted to the anti-academy votes.

Christopher Hawtree, the Green parliamentary candidate for Hove, has given his reaction to Hove Park School’s move to academy status, the overwhelming vote by parents opposing the move, and the election of three parent-governors opposed to academy status.

Councillor Hawtree, who represents Central Hove on Brighton and Hove City Council, said: "Naturally, I am delighted at both the resounding voice of the parental ballot and their winning those three places on the board of governors which had been mysteriously empty.

"I have hugely enjoyed helping the inspired campaigners - at a meeting, the school gates, on George Street, and on the splendid march where public support, with much parping, was so heartening to see.

"At one meeting, I said that - as with Hove Library a decade ago - the secret of a campaign is to have fun while at work on this. And the Hove Park parents did so, not least with the 'Gove song', which I cannot get out of my mind now - even though the lyrics will have to be adjusted as, of course, he was sacked the very day of this announcement.

"The result is a vindication of cogent argument, varied and spirited campaigning. I give everybody my heartfelt congratulations for showing that you mess with Hove at your peril.

"I now hope that the governors will recognise this, and announce immediately that the divisive and unfair Academy system will not be foisted upon a School which is such a credit to a community-owned educational system. It is time for education to return to the fore - and the sun to set upon such misbegotten empire-building."