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Introduction

Academies are publicly funded independent schools which enjoy a number of freedoms and flexibilities. For example, they

  • can set pay and conditions for all staff
  • don’t have to follow the National Curriculum
  • can change the length of school terms and school days
  • have greater control over the school budget
  • have the freedom to spend money the local authority currently spends on behalf of schools
  • have responsibility for all capital assets – land and buildings – and their management

All maintained schools – primary, secondary and special schools – that are performing well can submit an application to convert to an academy. Any school can apply with other schools – as part of a formal partnership – to join an existing academy trust with a proven track record of school improvement. At least one of the schools applying must be performing well.

Governance

The Governing Body is responsible for establishing the academy’s trust and entering into a funding agreement with the Department for Education (DfE) for the running of the academy.

Its key responsibilities are to:

  • ensure the quality of education provision
  • challenge and monitor the performance of the academy
  • manage the academy trust’s finances and property
  • employ staff

Other information

SEND information – part of our Local Offer

The Academies Act places the same requirements on academies and maintained schools for vulnerable and disadvantaged pupils, such as those with SEN, Children Looked After, those from minority ethnic groups and those at risk of exclusion.

 

Academies are answerable directly to the DfE about their standards.

When a school becomes an academy the academy trust becomes its own admissions authority. This means that it manages its own admissions process. It also must make sure that its admission arrangements comply with the School Admissions Code.

Academies have the freedom to choose their own term dates and holidays and inset days. The local authority will continue to set term and holiday dates for maintained schools.

Academies will have their own complaints procedure and parents are advised to contact the academy for a copy if required. The local authority cannot become involved with academy complaints.

Last reviewed: January 11, 2024 by Helly

Next review due: July 11, 2024

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