Academies are publicly funded independent schools which enjoy a number of freedoms and flexibilities.

  • They can set pay and conditions for all staff
  • They don’t have to follow the National Curriculum
  • They can change the length of school terms and school days
  • They have greater control over the school budget
  • They have the freedom to spend money the local authority currently spends on behalf of schools
  • They have responsibility for all capital assets (land, 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, providing at least one is performing well, to join an existing academy trust with a proven track record of school improvement.