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Allow maintained nurseries to take on academy freedoms

Last updated: 05:41pm 9 January 2019

And we will continue to support maintained nurseries and allow them to take on academy freedoms, supporting them to grow independently or as part of a multi-academy trust.

Conservative Party Manifesto 2017, p.72

Our verdict

Since the Academies Act 2010, the government has been aiming to extend academies to represent 100% of British schools. The academy programme allows schools to receive funding from central government while keeping some freedom in terms of their curriculum.  The primary and secondary school sectors have seen a significant growth in the number of academies, leaving nurseries with an odd status. If the academy programme continues, they could end up as the only schools remaining under local authorities, which will lack infrastructure and funds.

An All-Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) was set up to look into this in 2016 and reached the conclusion that nurseries should be included in the process of “academisation”.

The current government has proposed allowing maintained nurseries some academy freedoms, which would permit them to found Multi-Academy Trusts (MATs). However, this is still only a promise. We will consider this policy ‘in progress’ once we see evidence of legal and/or administrative changes being made to make this happen. As of now, this policy is ‘not started’.

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