The network of state-funded academies will have “well being” at the heart of the curriculum, with lessons in positive psychology for all pupils based on classes pioneered at Wellington College in Berkshire, where fees for boarders are £30,000 a year.
Anthony Seldon, the master of Wellington, has appointed James O’Shaughnessy, who until October was David Cameron’s head of policy, to run the scheme.
Mr O’Shaughnessy, a Wellington old boy, is a proponent of the Prime Minister’s controversial “happiness index”, a measure of the nation’s well-being levels to be published this summer.
He said the private school’s brand of education could benefit thousands of children in up to a dozen new academies in the next five years.
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