Set up a free school

Types of free school you can open, including mainstream, alternative provision and special free schools. Forms, budgeting, guides to setting up.

Services

  1. Apply to open an alternative provision free school

    Application forms and assessment criteria for groups interested in opening an alternative provision (AP) free school.

  2. Special free school financial template

    A tool to help special free schools plan their budget.

  3. Mainstream and 16 to 19 free school financial template

    A tool to help mainstream and 16 to 19 free schools plan their budget.

  1. Free school applications: suitability and declarations form

    Form and assessment criteria for members and directors of academy trusts to submit personal information.

  2. Registration of free schools

    Forms to register a new free school and guidance on the school standards required.

See all services

Guidance and regulation

  1. Free schools: how to apply
  2. Setting up a free school

    Set up a free school - find out what you need to do and how to increase your chance of success

  3. Establishing a new school: free school presumption
  1. Free school pre-opening guide

    • Guidance
    • Department for Education
  2. How to open a maths school

    • Guidance
    • Department for Education
See all guidance and regulation

News and communications

  1. More choice as over 80,000 new free school places created

    • Department for Education
    • Press release
  2. Building a school system that works for everyone

    • Department for Education
    • News story
  3. David Cameron announces 31 new free schools on final visit as Prime Minister

    • Department for Education and Prime Minister's Office, 10 Downing Street
    • Press release
  4. Games Workshop founder and entrepreneur to open 2 free schools

    • Department for Education
    • Press release
See all news and communications

Transparency

  1. Free schools: open schools and successful applications

    • Department for Education
    • Transparency
  2. New school proposals

    • Department for Education
    • Transparency
  3. Free schools: applicant information for wave 11

    • Department for Education
    • Transparency
  4. Free school applications: assessing the need for more schools

    • Department for Education
    • Transparency
  5. Free schools: applicant information for wave 12

    • Department for Education
    • Transparency
See all transparency