FACTS & FIGURES
FIND A FREE SCHOOL NEAR YOU
The Swan School is a secondary school in Oxford, which opened in 2019. The school offers an extended school day and a range of enrichment activities including specialised sport, music, drama, and volunteering. The school is part of the River Learning Trust and has capacity for 1260 places.
Abbey View Primary Academy opened in High Wycombe in 2019. The school is part of the Inspiring Futures Partnership Trust and is driven by the trust’s motto ‘learning today...leading tomorrow’.
Hope Community School Southampton is a Christian faith primary school which opened in 2017. It is part of the New Generation Schools Trust and has two forms of entry. The school is driven by the values of adventure, openness, creativity and excellence and is underpinned by a Christian ethos. The school runs an extended day from 8.30am to 4pm which includes a 'soft start' and a 'soft finish'. This allows flexibility for families to drop their children off but also to create opportunities for parents to interact with classroom staff.
Grove Academy is an all-through school in Slough. The school, which opened in 2017, is part of the SASH Education Trust and can cater for up to 1,940 pupils. Although the school has a large community, it has a small school feeling at its heart. Throughout their time at the school, two key skills which pupils will develop are digital literacy and oracy.
Eden Boys' Leadership Academy, Manchester is an 11-18 secondary school with a Muslim faith designation which opened in 2017. It is part of the successful Star Academies Trust and can cater for up to 800 pupils. The school has leadership as its specialism, as well as encouraging its students to participate in arts, such as drama and public speaking, and sport.
The Stephen Longfellow Academy is an all-through alternative provision school for those aged 5-16 in Leeds. The school, which opened in 2017, is part of The GORSE Academies Trust and can cater for up to 300 pupils who are not thriving in mainstream education. Students are taught national curriculum subjects and have access to a range of therapeutic services such as counselling. Therapy is delivered as both an integrated part of the school timetable but also in groups or on a 1:1 basis.
Manchester Enterprise Academy Central is an 11-16 secondary school that opened in 2017. The school is part of the Altius Trust and can cater for up to 1,050 pupils. The curriculum comprises not only knowledge and skills, but the attitudes, beliefs and values which underpin the relationships of the school community. The school also offers a Social and Cultural Capital curriculum which is designed to give students access to a diverse range of experiences that they may not otherwise have, such as going to see an opera.
LIPA Sixth Form College is a 16-19 school in Liverpool for pupils looking to study creative or performing arts’ subjects at Level 3. It opened in 2016 and can cater for up to 360 pupils. They offer a Level 3, two year study programme leading to a University of Arts London-accredited Extended Diploma across either a Performing & Production Arts pathway or a Music pathway. Students can choose to specialise in Acting, Dance, Music (performance), Music (technology), Production Arts (design) or Production Arts (technical).
Daventry Hill is an all-through special school for those with cognitive and learning difficulties in Daventry, Northamptonshire. The school, which opened in 2016, is part of the Creating Tomorrow MAT and can cater for up to 175 pupils. The curriculum has been designed to deliver worthwhile and meaningful outcomes for its students based on Preparation for Adulthood.
The Eaglewood School is a 7-16 alternative provision school in Hampshire. The school, which opened in 2016, is part of the Gryphon Trust and can cater for up to 72 pupils who are not thriving in mainstream education. Students enjoy a full and varied enriched curriculum, as the school believes that learning experiences away from the ‘traditional learning curriculum’ are fundamental to its pupils development.
The Olive School, Preston is a Muslim faith primary school which opened in 2016. It is part of the successful Star Academies Trust and has two forms of entry. Alongside the National Curriculum, the 'Core Knowledge Sequence UK' is used for English, Mathematics, Science, History and Geography. Like all Star schools, it has “Leadership” as a specialism, specifically Performance, Moral and Civic Leadership.
Venturers' Academy is a special school for those aged 4-16 year olds in Bristol. The school opened 2016 as part of the Merchants' Academy Trust and was the first state funded specialist provision in Bristol for children aged with a diagnosis of Autistic Spectrum Condition and an Education Health Care Plan. The school caters for 95 children with a primary diagnosis of autism it is co-sponsored by the Society of Merchant Venturers and University of Bristol.
Beacon of Light is an alternative provision school for 13-16 year olds in Sunderland. It was founded by the charity Foundation of Light in 2016, who have links with Sunderland F.C. The school is located within the Beacon of Light complex, which includes sport facilities and a World of Work Zone. The school works closely with several business partners such as Nissan and Arriva PLC, which means its pupils have access to a range of unique work experience opportunities.
North Cestrain School is an 11-18 secondary school in Trafford. The school was formerly independent and converted to free school status in 2016. It is part of the Hamblin Education Trust and can cater for up to 540 pupils. The school's ethos is based around the 'Cestrian Way', which encompasses the school's carefully constructed, knowledge-based curriculum and its 'no excuses' approach.
TBAP 16-19 Academic AP Academy is a post-16 alternative provision school in Hammersmith and Fulham, West London. The school, which opened in 2016, is part of the TBAP Trust and can cater for up to 50 pupils who are not thriving in mainstream education. The school enables pupils to study the International Baccalaureate who may not be able to realise their potential in a mainstream setting. Students are supported by a rigorous mentoring program and study support sessions which run until 5pm, helping them to meet very high academic standards.
The Boxing Academy is an alternative provision school for those aged 14-16 in Hackney, East London. The school, which opened in 2017, can cater for up to 40 students who are not thriving in mainstream education. GCSEs in English Language, Mathematics, RE, Art and Science are available, as well as vocational and boxing pathways. Through its unique boxing discipline-based ethos, boxing mentors help pupils to channel their aggression and learn discipline, teamwork and achievement, often for the first time in their lives.
The Fermain Academy is an alternative provision school for pupils aged 13-16 in Macclesfield, Cheshire. The school, which opened in 2015, is part of the Youth Engagement Schools Trust and can cater for up to 60 pupils who are not thriving in mainstream education. The Fermain Academy provides a personalised curriculum that has a particular focus on strengthening pupils' skills in English and Maths. A range of academic and vocational subjects are available to students, as well as art and forest learning.
The Khalsa Academy Wolverhampton is an 11-19 secondary school with a Sikh ethos. The school, which opened in 2015, was established by the Khalsa Academies Trust and can cater for up to 840 pupils. The school's ethos is underpinned by three Sikh principles: going beyond academic achievement, beyond the individual and promoting selflessness.
King Solomon International Business School is an all-through Christian school in Birmingham. The school, which opened in 2015, was created by a local community group with the support of Woodard Schools, a group of state and independent schools. The school believes in making its students globally conscious, which it achieves through its business specialism and through its teaching of other cultures and modern foreign languages.
Eden Boys' School, Birmingham is an 11-18 secondary school with a Muslim-faith designation. The school, which opened in 2015, is part of the successful Star Academies Trust and caters for up to 800 pupils. The school offers a traditional curriculum, focusing on GCSEs and A-levels, which is complemented by programmes of personal development and community service. In 2018 Ofsted judged the school to be 'Outstanding' in all areas.
Eden Boys' School, Preston is an 11-18 secondary school with a Muslim-faith designation. The school, which opened in 2015, is part of the successful Star Academies Trust and caters for up to 800 pupils. The school focuses on the study of the Ebacc, which is complemented by programmes of personal development and community service. In 2018 Ofsted rated the school as 'Outstanding' in all areas.
Unity Community Primary opened in 2015 in Cheetwood, Manchester. It was opened by The Big Life Schools and has two forms of entry. Unity Community Primary delivers a broad and balanced curriculum, with a particular focus on communication and enterprise. Unity Community Primary aims to teach students to be respectful of the diverse ethnicity, religion, families, educational needs and abilities of all our children.
Wolverhampton Vocational Training Centre is a 16-19 special school in Wolverhampton which caters for children with emotional, behavioural or complex cognitive needs. The school opened in 2015 as part of the Central Learning Partnership Trust. With only 25 young people in each year group at the school and no more than five pupils per class, the school is able to deliver highly personalised learning programmes based around their future employment goals.
Eden Girls' School, Coventry is a Muslim-faith secondary school which opened in 2014. The school is part of the successful Star Academies trust and can cater for up to 800 pupils. It has a particular focus on developing the leadership skills of its students, facilitated through links to the Institute of Leadership and Management. The girls also follow a "community" curriculum which teaches them about voluntary activity and civic duty. The school was inspected by Ofsted in 2017 and judged to be 'Outstanding' in all areas.
Holy Trinity School is an all-through school for those aged 4-18 in Worcestershire. The school opened in 2014 and can cater for up to 785 pupils. Holy Trinity offers a higher than average number of teaching hours which helps it to deliver a broad and balanced curriculum. The school offers a wide range of extra-curricular activities such as music, drama and school trips.
Braywick Court School is a primary school in Maidenhead, Berkshire. This school, which opened in 2014, has one form of entry and is operated by Bellevue Place Education Trust, who have experience of running independent schools in the UK and Switzerland. The school prides itself on valuing each child as an individual, with every staff member knowing all the students by name. The school was judged to be 'Outstanding' in all areas by Ofsted in 2017.
XP School is an 11-18 secondary in Doncaster. The school opened in 2014 and can cater for up to 350 students. Part of the XP School Trust, XP School aims to prepare pupils for life in the modern world through integration with the community and authentic experiences.
Whitehall Park School is a primary school in Islington, North London. The school, which opened in 2014, is part of the Bellevue Place Educational Trust and has two forms of entry. Whitehall Park aims to offer children the experience of an independent school within the state sector. The school promotes an educational philosophy based on valuing self, others and the environment through the consideration of an ethical values vocabulary.
St Mary's Church of England Primary Norwood Green opened in 2014 in Ealing. The school has one form of entry and was established through a partnership between a local community group and the London Diocesan Board for Schools to help meet the need for school places in the area. The school encourages a collaborative approach, engaging with children, parents and carers in reviewing progress and promoting the best outcomes for children’s education.
Ascot Road Community Free School is a primary school in Watford. The school, which opened in 2014, is part of West Hertfordshire Community Free School Trust and has two forms of entry. Ascot Road Community Free School aims to develop its children into motivated, independent, self-reflective learners though excellent teaching and learning.
Queen Elizabeth's Grammar School is an all-through school for those aged 4-18 in Blackburn. Formerly an independent school, QEGS became a free school in 2014 and can cater for up to 1200 pupils. From Year 7, pupils study either French or Spanish, as well as classics, and all students study German in Year 8.
Marylebone Boys' School is an 11-18 secondary school with a Christian ethos in West London. The school, which opened in 2014, was established by a group of local parents and volunteers, with the support of the London Diocesan Board for Schools. It can cater for up to 840 boys. The school culture is shaped by three core values: professionalism, positivity and productivity. Marylebone Boys' offers a rigorous academic curriculum as well as a strong range of enrichment activityies, including Arabic, jazz and the Duke of Edinburgh award.
Canary Wharf College, East Ferry, is a primary school with a Christian ethos in Tower Hamlets, London. The school, which opened in 2011, was the first school to be established by the Canary Wharf College trust and can cater for up to 280 pupils. The school has a house system which they believes helps each student to foster a sense of responsibility. Because of the school's small size, it also prides itself on staff knowing every student. In 2013, the school was judged to be 'Outstanding' in all areas by Ofsted.
A primary school in East Dulwich, South London. The school, which opened in 2014, was established by the Harris Federation of schools, which runs a number of highly successful Academies and free schools. The capacity of the school is 420, and it has a particular focus on developing literacy skills. The school aims to instill confidence and motivation in its pupils by ensuring every lesson is creative and engaging.
An all- through school (14-19) based near Tottenham Hale, London. The school, which opened in 2014, was established by the Harris Federation of schools, which runs a number of highly successful Academies and free schools. It will serve 1570 pupils when full and has a particular focus on inspiring high achievement in mathematics and enterprise.
INSIDE FREE SCHOOLS
Harmonize is an Outstanding alternative provision free school in Liverpool for 13-16 years olds who have struggled to thrive in a mainstream setting.
FREE SCHOOL NEWS
The research, commissioned to mark ten years since the first free schools were approved to open, covers pupil attainment, popularity with parents, and teacher workforce.
Findings show free schools are the top performing type of school at GCSE; that 16-19 free schools are the highest performing post-16 providers; that free schools are more popular with parents than the closest neighbouring schools; and that free schools are more likely to be rated Outstanding by Ofsted.
The Secretary of State for Education has decided that Dixons’ application to establish a free school in Manchester should proceed to the ‘pre-opening’ phase. This is a significant step towards opening the school.
“We are delighted that our free school in Manchester will proceed to the pre-opening phase. We already run six highly successful free schools, achieving some of the best results in the country. We now want to bring the same success to Manchester.
Deborah, Nicholas and Nuno visited Langley Hall to witness what the school does best within its Music Department and to offer their unconditional support and testimonial towards the opening of Langley Hall’s new Music Academy in January 2021.