Dozens of groups aiming to open free schools in England next year are meeting in London today to get tips from those who have already set them up. This is from the BBC…
Members of many of the 102 groups recently approved to open schools will meet at the West London Free School.
Schools Minister Elizabeth Truss will tell them she hopes more schools will open for longer to help parents with childcare.
So far, 81 free schools have opened and another 200 are in the pipeline.
The schools are funded by the state but set up by special interest groups made up of parents, teachers, charities, businesses, universities, trusts, religious or voluntary bodies.
The schools are independent of local authorities and have increased control over their curriculum and teachers’ pay and conditions.
The conference will aim to give advice on legal matters, finance, recruitment and leadership, buildings, dealing with local authorities, the media and answering critics.
The organiser of the event is Toby Young, the founder of the West London Free School (WLFS) in Hammersmith, which was the first free school to get government approval.
He said the aim was to pass on lessons learned by schools which had opened, to try to make things easier for those coming afterwards.
More at: Free school pioneers advise wannabes
If you’re at the conference please do let us know how it’s going via Twitter or in the comments below…