Information for organisations who are providing, or are planning to provide free schools and associated services in Leicester.
Where are we now?
We are responsible for ensuring sufficient provision of school placements for the children of Leicester. The council is unable to set up new schools itself , but we do work with the Department for Education (DfE) for the provision of new free schools where there is a demonstrated need for creating additional capacity. Free schools are funded by the government but are not run by the council. These schools are run on a not-for-profit basis and can be set up by groups such as charities, businesses and academy trusts.
We may also continue to use capital to expand existing school places either on a permanent or temporary basis. Over the last five years, and in response to a growing need, we have created approximately 5,000 additional school places and invested over £350m in our secondary and special educational schools as part of the Building Schools for the Future programme; as well as investing over £27m into our primary schools as part of a programme of expansion to provide additional classrooms for an increased demand for places.
We are also responsible for supporting schools to help them meet aspirations, raise standards, and reduce gaps in attainment. This is closely tied in with ensuring that the delivery of new places carefully matches demand so that no schools suffers a loss in pupil numbers.
Where are we going?
Going forward, Leicester remains popular for school places. Therefore we are currently developing a school place planning strategy in consultation with our schools and colleges that will seek to provide additional capacity over the next few years. We are also producing an Education Strategy that will set out the direction for the broad range of provision and improvement across schools for the future.
What does this mean for providers?
There may be opportunities for portable building manufacturers to be invited to bid for either temporary or permanent modular buildings so that existing schools can be expanded if there is the demand for additional places.
Free schools can be set up by groups like academies, businesses and charities. To set up a new free school, providers would have to apply through the Department for Education (DfE).
Head of Education Sufficiency and Admissions