0370 270 6000

Free schools – learning from past mistakes?

10 November 2014

The Schools Commissioner has admitted that consideration of free school proposals in the early days of the programme was not as robust as it could have been and that free schools may well have opened in areas which already had surplus places and could lead to free schools failing as they are unable to attract sufficient numbers of pupils. The Commissioner noted that 80% of free schools were now being opened in areas of basic need and that rigorous criteria were now applied to proposals to target new provision to those areas which required additional provision or where there was insufficient good or outstanding provision already. Critics of the programme have suggested that a more transparent system is required.

The free school programme’s aim was to provide a method by which new schools could be opened as a result of parental demand and to provide outstanding provision in areas of need. The robust criteria now being applied to proposals should go some way to meeting these aims but only time will tell how effective the programme has been in raising standards overall.

Related opinions

The role of benchmarking in setting pay in schools

The use of salary benchmarking data is common place in most sectors in the UK and it’s great to see that CST’s salary survey for school trusts is growing with a higher number of participating organisations and included job roles. This years’ survey includes over 2000 job roles and 147 participating organisations.

View blog

How does the UK Education Sector fare amidst the energy crisis?

The world is currently living through one of the most significant global energy crises that has been seen in modern times, with energy prices and bills soaring at an unprecedented rate. With the added pressures of the Russian invasion of Ukraine and the slowdown in China’s economy, these soaring energy prices are continuing to strangle the global economy.

View blog

Grammar schools revisited?

The words “Grammar schools” are once again being whispered in government and the question of whether the creation of new grammar schools will finally be implemented as a central focus to DFE policy has re-surfaced.

View blog

Why you shouldn’t buy a dragon with school budget

As a result of a recent Charity Commission legal action, the former trustee of a Welsh charity was ordered to pay over £117,000 to Wrexham charities which support cancer patients.

View blog

Mailing list sign up

Select which mailings you would like to receive from us.

Sign up