Schools are also be required to play their part in protecting children from damage and ignorance, and guide them towards positive activities and away from unfriendly behaviour.
But although the move was welcomed by the Local Government Association, it criticised the exclusion οf academies and city technology colleges from the duty. Two hundred academies are planned by 2010. They are also excluded from the duty to admit looked-after children.
Under the Children Act 2004, schools, unlike councils, primary care trusts and other named partners, are not placed under a duty to co-operate to improve childrens wellbeing. Childrens services leaders lobbied for such a duty to ensure schools did not focus narrowly on educational standards. The government argued it was only needed for strategic bodies.
Today education is seen as key to future success for both individuals and societies. It offers individuals knowledge and understanding to give meaning to their lives. It provides the skills (and qualifications) for worthwhile employment.
Education also plays a major role in shaping the future οf society - it can promote the healthy growth οf a generation, provide the necessary underpinning skills for economic growth and foster social cohesion between disparate communities. These are challenging tasks for any education system. The evidence from international comparisons is that the English system performs reasonably well in pupil attainment but fails in the promotion οf equity with the result that our system functions most effectively for those with social, economic or cultural advantages. No country in the world has a system which has overcome the effects οf disadvantage on achievement but some, like England, achieve well overall and have a relatively small gap between the outcomes οf the most and the least successful.