Education Secretary gives green light for schools to open from 2014

A further tranche of 102 free schools has been given permission to open their doors to pupils from next year.

Education Secretary Michael Gove today revealed that he has backed applications for the new state-funded learning centres, which operate outside of local authority control.

Among the latest wave of free schools approved are the Jane Austen College in Norwich, North Somerset Enterprise and Technology College in Weston-Super-Mare, National Autistic Society schools in London and East Cheshire, and the Seva School for Sikh pupils in Coventry.

Forty-six of the new schools are in London, with just three in the South-west, five in the East Midlands, eight in the West Midlands, nine in Yorkshire and the Humber, nine in the East of England and 11 in both the North-west and South-east. No new free schools were approved in the North-east.

Gove said that in combination with the 81 free schools already open and 109 scheduled to open in September and beyond, the new schools would provide 130,000 new places for pupils.

“There are many innovators in local communities set on raising standards of education for their children,” he said.

“I am delighted to approve so many of their high-quality plans to open a free school.

“Free schools are extremely popular with parents and are delivering strong discipline and teaching excellence across the country.”

The Department for Education said 25 of the new schools were faith schools, eight were special schools and 16 offered alternative provision.

Thirty-six of the schools are secondaries, 33 are primaries, and 11 are so-called “all through” schools.

For a full list of the latest approvals see the file on the right.