The Conservative-Liberal Democrat Coalition government's "free schools" in England

Hatcher, R. (2011) The Conservative-Liberal Democrat Coalition government's "free schools" in England. Educational Review, 63 (4). pp. 485-503. ISSN 00131911 (ISSN)

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Free schools are new state-funded but privately-run schools set up under the academies legislation. Free schools represent the most overtly market-oriented policy within the Conservative-led Coalition government's school reform programme in England and have provoked intense controversy, centring on issues of pupil attainment, social equality, democracy and privatisation. This paper evaluates the evidence for the performance of the models on which the policy is based: charter schools in the US, free schools in Sweden, and Labour's academies. The potential impact on local schools is assessed. Issues of democratic accountability are discussed, in terms of the application process, the governance of free schools, and their impact on local authorities. Factors affecting the future trajectory of the free school initiative are discussed, including the opportunities for private companies to set up and run free schools for profit. The paper concludes by considering the challenge which free schools represent to their critics. © 2011 Copyright Educational Review.

Item Type: Article
Identification Number:
November 2011Published
Uncontrolled Keywords: attainment, democracy, equality, free schools, privatisation
Subjects: CAH22 - education and teaching > CAH22-01 - education and teaching > CAH22-01-01 - education
Divisions: Faculty of Health, Education and Life Sciences > Centre for Study of Practice and Culture in Education (C-SPACE)
Depositing User: Hussen Farooq
Date Deposited: 26 Jan 2017 14:02
Last Modified: 03 Mar 2022 17:01

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