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Transparency data

Free school applications: assessing the need for more schools

How we assess the need for a new mainstream school in a local area when we receive applications to open new free schools.



This document explains the criteria we use when we assess the need for a new mainstream free school in a local area.

Mainstream free schools can be:

  • primary schools
  • secondary schools
  • all-through schools

They exclude:

  • 16 to 19 academies
  • alternative providers (places that provide education for children who can’t go to a mainstream school)
  • special free schools (for children with special educational needs or disabilities)