Alternative provision schools

Everton Free School uses football to motivate disengaged young people.

This guidance is designed to give step-by-step advice on each section of the application form to set up a free school. 

NSN has produced detailed guidance on the application form which can be found here. To make the best use of these resources, you should also look at the relevant DfE application forms and criteria.

In addition to these resources, which are aimed specifically at guiding you through the application process, we have a wide range of other resources that look at specific areas of the application in more detail on our Resources page.

AP application resources

NSN has created some resources that you will find useful when addressing difficult aspects of the DfE’s free school application criteria.


You will need to demonstrate to the DfE that you have robust plans for how your free school will be governed and a strong team to deliver the school.


Guidance on what you can do to identify a site at application stage.

Due diligence (Section I)

Applicants need to submit detailed information on team members to allow the DfE to perform background checks.