David Cameron, the Conservative PM, is scheduled to pledge the creation of 500 more free schools during the next five years. He is to commit setting up of extra 270000 school places in the free schools by 2020, on being re-elected.
As per the Prime Minister, these state funded free schools are augmenting standards and ensuring discipline. He will speak in London to announce the creation of 49 free schools, the last series during the tenure of the current Parliament. He is also set to promise the creation of further 500 free schools during his next tenure in the Parliament, on getting re-elected in the general election to be held in May this year.
Both primary and secondary free schools are established by charities, academy sponsors, teachers, and groups of parents, and are outside the ambit of the local authorities. With the opening/approval of the latest series of free schools, the total goes up to 400 containing 230000 places. Prime Minister would also argue that Conservatives are the only political party opening free schools and creating more good places for the children of the country. He would also add that free schools are outperforming other schools and enhancing performance of others around them. Thus, these schools are creating more opportunities for children to acquire knowledge and imbibe skills that make them better citizens. If everything goes on as planned, there would be one free school in every 30 state schools by the end of the tenure of the next Parliament.
As free schools maintain high standards and discipline, state schools are also benefitted as they also enhance their standards in competition with free schools. Thus, it is ultimately children that are immensely benefitted by free schools. The director of the New Schools Network, Natalie Evans, supports the setting up of free schools as she thinks it compels other types of schools to “raise their games”. As per the Department of Education, it was for the first time that the new series of free schools would get capital funding for providing nursery places to two to four-year olds. The free schools to be announced would include the Northampton International Academy; Green School for Boys in Isleworth and Brentford; the New School for Harrow; the Great Western Academy, Swindon;; Stockport; Swindon Church of England Secondary School; Cheadle Hulme Primary School, Bishop Chavasse School, and Tonbridge, Kent.