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Page last updated at 07:45 GMT, Thursday, 16 June 2011 08:45 UK

Academies herald 'a change of attitude'

The 200 worst performing primary schools in England will be converted into academies by 2012/2013, under plans being announced by the education secretary.

Michael Gove defended his plans on the Today programme, telling Sarah Montague that the academies programme had already been "highly successful" in improving aspirations in secondary schools because of its "single and relentless focus" on raising standards.

"The essence of ensuring schools improve is getting bureaucracy out of the way, and making sure that heads are liberated in order to concentrate solely on student achievement."

He argued that academies were able to benefit individual students because they were driven not by money, but a "change of attitude".

In response to the claim that he had lost control of the education budget, Mr Gove admitted that mistakes that had been made in the funding system, but that these were part of the "mess created by the last government."

He added that money being clawed back from academies and local authorities reflected problems that had been "inherited" and was something his party was in the process of "putting right".

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