I was listening to radio 4 this morning and they had a teacher and a parent on that wants to set up a Free (i.e. free of LA control and set up by a group not otherwise in the state sector) school as announced under the new Govt policy. They also had some union hack on that was spinning the usual dit about them depriving communities of the equality and diversity uptopia if schools were set up by parents that sought to recruit kids of a similar background. His view was that it would be the end of a great socialist experiment which could not possibly be allowed because, you see, the past 13 years haven't ended and although Labour lost the election that shouldn't be enough to actually stop them from governing and a new government shouldn't be allowed to press forward its own ideas. That would just be wrong. Anyway, I digress. It got me thinking about US style "Military Schools". As a discussion point, the "Free School" concept now makes this kind of provision possible. We have similar institutions in the UK in the form of St Eddy's school and Welbeck, but they aren't anything near "state" or "open" in their intake for various reasons. Under the Free School concept it would be possible to consider opening a school whereby the ethos is broadly âcadetshipâ with an expansion of the CCF concept into the entire school day. Perhaps the school could contain 3 or more Houses, with students electing to join an Army/RN/RAF house, wear the uniform of the Houseâs parent service (in line with CCF dress regs) with a significant emphasis on extra curricular activity based on combining the CCF and the daily syllabus with community based citizenship. The funding would be per capita, which means finding the capital funding and a location. A number of authorities are considering moving from a 3-tier to 2-tier system (the 3 tear has first schools for 5-9 year olds, middle school, for 9-13 year olds and the high school from 13-18, whereas the 2 tier system has primary and secondary beginning at 5 years and 11 years respectively). In other words, growing from a small to large school could be possible by looking to take over surplus middle school building stock where authorities opt to go to super-schools of 2000 kids plus. The school could follow the National Curriculum, but free of local authority interefering it could be built on an ethos similar to the military. Choices of subjects would be down to the school which could include greater emphasis on the classics, and providing a proper education where the kids learn rather than âexperienceâ. Because there is freedom from LA control, aspects such as formal leadership development could be included in the syllabus so that instead of the CCF being an extra-curricular add-on it is fully integral to the school day and a key part of its culture. Obviously it would not be a feeder to UK armed forces, and would not have any obligation to join up and neither would it be a pre-ATR/RMAS establishment but it could offer an excellent grounding and development for those wishing to join up. I think where I am coming from is that I got a shock in my OTC days when I discovered that many of my colleagues from schools that were better than mine (which was just about every grammar or independent) had a much more rounded education than me and knew more than me. I had to do a lot of cultural catching up because when I was at school it was a tick-box exercise even then (and Iâm talking over 20 years ago). There is an opportunity, I think, to address this gap. What do you say on this? Is it feasible? Could it be done? What would be the pitfalls? You wonât be seeing the âWoopert Military Academyâ any time soon, but it has got me thinking.