An investigation by Watchsted and Schoolsweek reveals the eye-watering salaries being paid to the fat cat bosses of academy chains at the expense of the taxpayer. This comes as George Osborne announces the Conservatives’ plan to force all of English schools to become academies.
This chart shows ten of the highest paid employees at academy chains:
The highest earner is from the Harris Federation , which is owned by millionaire Tory donor and unelected Tory peer Lord Phillip Harris. Daniel Moynihan from this academy federation earns £370,000 a year, more than 2-and-a-half times that of the Prime Minister. His salary has risen by 83% since 2009.
This is known as ‘top slicing’. These academy chains are listed as nonprofit ‘charities’ so cannot pay dividends to shareholders. They get around this by paying vast sums to ‘administrative staff’ and bosses. The Tories will maintain that these academies cannot make profit, but this is entirely disingenuous.
Remember that these obscene salaries are being dolled out at our expense during times of austerity. While Osborne will announce a wholesale move to academy schools today, this will be joined by further cruel austerity cuts. After having dropped his raid on middle-class pension pots remarkably easily, Osborne’s cuts will likely disproportionately affect the poor and vulnerable yet again.
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These vast sums should not be going into bosses’ pockets. The money should be invested in our teachers (whose pay is next to nothing in comparison) and students in order to improve British education. These CEOs are profiteering at our expense under the banners of “nonprofit charities”. It is the poor and vulnerable that will suffer as a result.
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