Free school news and press releases

Free School News

If you have a press or media enquiry, please contact press@newschoolsnetwork.org.

NSN News
Wed 7 November 2018

Sigrun Olafsdottir, Chief Operating Officer, said:

"The application process to set up a free school is extremely rigorous and time consuming, so all groups can be proud of their hard work to reach this stage. This is particularly true in this round of free school applications, which explicitly targets areas of greatest need.

Mon 5 November 2018

But the truth is that it can also be a nerve-wracking time for all involved. The prospect of not getting into the preferred school, of missing out on what could be the only high-performing institution in the area, is a chilling thought for parents and students alike. 

Free Schools in the media
Wed 31 October 2018

Cumbria Academy for Autism (CAA) have appointed Richard Aindow as headteacher. He is currently deputy headteacher at Presfield High School and Specialist College in Southport, which caters for children with autism. In a statement on the CAA's website, Lynne Thornton, chair of the board of governors, said: ‘The opportunity to lead our school attracted an excellent field of candidates all of whom recognised Cumbria Academy for Autism as an exciting opportunity to transform autism education in the West Cumbria.’

NSN News
Mon 22 October 2018

Effective from the first of November, Sigrun Olafsdottir will take on the day-to-day running of NSN as Chief Operating Officer. Unity Howard will also take up a new role as Head of Advisory Services. The Trustees will soon be launching the recruitment process for a permanent Director.

Free Schools in the media
Wed 17 October 2018

More than 500 people gathered for the opening of the Atam Academy’s new building. The ceremony included the arrival of the Sikh holy scriptures, known as the Sri Guru Granth Sahib Ji Maharaj, which were carried into the school’s spiritual hall. Worshippers also congregated in the hall for the recitation of the prayer known as the Sri Sukhmani Sahib Path and hymns known as Kirtan. The design of the new school building takes inspiration from the Golden Temple in India.

NSN News
Tue 16 October 2018

This is the second year running that free schools have topped the tables, having been the strongest performer last year with an average score of 0.15.

School Type

Number of schools

Number of pupils at end of Key Stage 4

Free Schools in the media
Mon 15 October 2018

The plans for the Laurus Ryecroft free school in Tameside have been unveiled and approved by local councillors. The new building will cover more than 10,000sq m and will include a ‘multi-use games area’, three grass pitches and two running tracks. The building will be on green belt land on the site of the former Littlemoss High School. The images of the new site can be seen here

Fri 12 October 2018

Firstly, there was the Labour Party Conference, where the Shadow Secretary of State said that she would ‘turn her back’ on Michael Gove’s reforms. She followed up on this by promising to bring an end to the free school programme in the event of gaining power. While obviously alarming to advocates of the programme, this is consistent with the Labour Party’s previous attitude towards the policy and isn’t a new development.