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Heart Breakfast with Jamie Theakston and Lucy Horobin 6:30am - 10am
Moorlands School in Luton is to become of the first schools in the country to be run as a state-funded "Free School".
24 Free Schools have been announced by the Government - giving parents new opportunities to put their child in a great local school, ready to open NEXT MONTH.
They are part of the Government’s drive to raise education standards across the country and tackle educational disadvantage.
Funding Agreements for Moorlands, and all 24 schools aiming to open in September have now been agreed and signed. This means that all schools aiming to open this year now have full approval from the Government, and can make the very final preparations needed to welcome the first ever Free School pupils. The schools will open at different times during the month.
These new, state-funded schools – set up by teachers, charities, education experts and parents – will eventually provide thousands of new places for children across England, many in areas where there is a shortage. They will also open in areas with historic educational underperformance.
Under the Coalition Government’s radical new plans, Free Schools will also be able to prioritise the most disadvantaged children (eligible for Free School Meals) in their school admissions arrangements. With the Pupil Premium, there will be an even greater incentive for Free Schools to attract pupils that are most in need of high-quality education.
Education Secretary Michael Gove told Heart "By freeing up teachers and trusting local communities to decide what is best, our reforms will help to raise standards for children in all schools."
Mr Gove added "These schools have been set up in record time – responding faster to the urgent demand of parents for a new, or different, type of education to benefit local children and their families. They will open just 10 to 15 months after submitting initial plans to the Department for Education. In the past, it normally took between three and five years to set up a maintained school, with the few that were able to be set up by parents taking up to nine years."
E-Act school in Northampton and the St Albans City Free School have not been included in this first round of approvals.