Free school news and press releases

Free School News

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Thu 9 August 2018

September 2018 will see the opening of 53 new free schools across England. NSN profiles five schools to illustrate that no school is alike, with each offering a unique opportunity for its local community and for national education as a whole.

Free Schools in the media
Fri 3 August 2018

An innovative European school in Culham has celebrated fantastic results. Students at the Europa School recorded an average of 81.8% in their European Baccalaureate exams. The qualification involves students studying between 10 and 14 subjects and to be fully bilingual in two languages. It is only offered at accredited ‘European schools’. There are only 14 of these school across Europe and Europa is the first one in the UK.

Wed 1 August 2018

Since free schools first established their roots in the autumn of 2011, the programme has expanded and evolved. Comparing data from 2011 and 2018 highlights the changes that have taken place and what has remained constant.

Free Schools in the media
Thu 26 July 2018

The Fermain Academy, opened in 2015 for pupils with behavioural and attendance problems, has achieved an Outstanding report from Ofsted. The free school, specifically set up to support children who struggle within mainstream education, was praised for their ‘impeccable’ behaviour and school leadership. Nic Brindle, headteacher, said: ‘It’s a cracking report. It’s the first inspection we’ve had so we are very pleased.’ He added that the next step is to become a example for all AP schools across the country. 

Free Schools in the media
Fri 20 July 2018

The staff and students at the City of London Academy, Highgate Hill will be playing their part in reducing the use of plastic by giving away water bottles, which will form part of the school’s uniform. When staff and students return from their summer holidays in September they will each be given a water bottle; this initiative will reduce the use of single use plastic and their carbon footprint.

Fri 20 July 2018

On Wednesday 27th June, Cathedral Primary School (CPS) in Bristol welcomed leaders from open and pre-open free schools from around the country as part of a NSN Spotlight event. Located in the heart of Bristol, CPS provides opportunities for children to experience an outstanding, personalised and enriched education with a special emphasis on music.

Fri 20 July 2018

On Thursday 26th April, Bilingual Primary School (BPS) in Brighton & Hove welcomed leaders from open and pre-open free schools around the country as part of a NSN Spotlight event. BPS opened in 2012 and currently has 460 children on role. When full, the school will maintain three-forms of entry from Reception through to Year 6. Rated ‘Good’ by Ofsted in 2016, the school offers a Spanish-English curriculum at the cutting edge of bilingual education in the UK.

Wed 18 July 2018

A coherent application

The Department for Education (DfE) explicitly asks that applicants ensure their vision is reflected across the whole of the application. Free school applicant groups often struggle to develop an application that is one coherent document. Instead applicants write a series of individual sections that lack consistency with each other and do not present clear vision for the school they are proposing. It can be difficult when different members of the team are responsible for different sections of the application.