Big Issue: Free schools and academies

The free school programme has proved to be controversial. Will it add parental choice or disadvantage existing schools? Follow the Government's plan to establish free schools around the country

Latest stories


Failing Montessori free school to close

One of the first free schools to open is to have its funding withdrawn by the Department for Education and will close next year.


Free schools cost three times as much as planned

According to a new report, the Department for Education has spent around three times more on Free Schools than the sum originally allocated.


Nick Clegg speaks out against Michael Gove's free schools

The Deputy Prime Minister is expected to say this week that he believes free schools have too much freedom.


Free schools to double this month

The number of free schools in England will double, with 93 more of the Government's flagship education institutions set to open this term.


Questions over funding for creationist nurseries

Creationist schools are being funded by the Government to provide free nursery education places, according to the British Humanist Association (BHA), Nursery World...


The National Autistic Society to open a free school

The National Autistic Society (NAS) has revealed plans to open a free school for children with autism in Berkshire and neighbouring counties in September.


Montessori free school graded inadequate

A Montessori free school has been rated inadequate in its first Ofsted inspection.


Local Government Association calls for food standards for academies and free schools

Academies and free schools are failing in their 'moral duty' to ensure children are getting healthy school meals, local government leaders have warned.


No case for profit-making schools, think-tank finds

Schools should not be run for profit, a report argues, which found that charities run schools better than businesses.