The simple answer is ‘forever’ unless either the Secretary of State or the proprietor gives the other 7 years notice or the academy no longer meets the legal requirements for an academy or is failing.
The current model agreement provides for termination:
- with 7 years’ notice either way,
- if the academy no longer meets the basic requirements for an academy, as set out in its Funding Agreement or the Academies Act 2010,
- if the academy is in material breach of its fuding agreement,
- if a ‘special measures termination event’ occurs (in simple terms: that the academy made inadequate progress following a ‘special measures notice’ from the Chief Inspector),
- if the academy is insolvent, or
- if the acedemy trust has decided to wind itself up.
Older agreements had similar termination conditions. But, as usual, funding agreements vary, so if you are concerned about the position in a particular academy or free school, check its funding agreement.