funding agreements

Free School meals implementation adds new complexity to Funding Agreements

Behind the political controversy over the Government’s policy of compulsory free school for all under 7′s lies the latest new complexity for the legal structures and the  funding agreements for academies and free schools. Funding agreements are already supplemented by freestanding obligations in legislation, such as applying the Freedom of Information Act to academies/free schools,…

Government extends requirement to teach evolution and banning of pseudoscience to future Academies

This is all from the British Humanist Association: “The Government has revised the single Academies model funding agreement to bring it in line with the Free Schools model funding agreement in preventing Academies from teaching pseudoscience and to require the teaching of evolution. The changes, which will apply to stand-alone Academies opening from today onwards,…

Academies breach their funding agreements

MP John Healey put down the following Parliamentary Question: To ask the Secretary of State for Education which academies, from which academy groups, have breached their funding agreements since May 2010; when each such breach occurred; and what the reasons for each such breach were. On 25 April 2013 Secretary of State Michael Gove gave…

conversion to becoming a “sponsored academy” – what does it mean?

The Department uses words like “partner” to describe the relationship between a school and its “sponsor” but that seems very misleading to me. As indeed does the word “sponsor”. I recently attended a presentation given by one of the Department’s “Academy Brokers” – apparently employed (or engaged – I am not sure whether he was…

How much do academies use their legal ‘freedoms’ in practice

See pages 44 and onwards in the Pearson Commission report on academies here. The report identifies the following ‘freedoms’: set their own curriculum, subject to teaching a broad and balanced curriculum that includes English, mathematics, science and religious education set the length of their school day and term appoint their own staff and set their…

Children and Families Bill 2013 would bring academies into line on SEN

As contemplated by the draft SEN bill published last autumn academies are – it seems – to be brought into line with maintained schools when it comes to SEN: the Secretary of State today (5 February 2013) announced the Children and Families Bill 2013, which includes (with some changes) what was trailed in the draft.…

Academies told they can employ unqualified teachers

Up to now academy and free school funding agreements have required them to employ qualified teachers. The Department has now changed the model agreements so that academies and free schools created in the future will not be constrained in that way. The new model agreement now says this: “… the Academy Trust shall, in accordance…