To ask the Secretary of State for Education, if his Department will take steps to ensure parents are able to make choices on (a) schools, (b) curriculum and (c) other parts of their children's education.
Since 2010, 921,000 school places have been created and the Government is on track to increase that to a million by the end of this decade. England has a diverse school system, with a range of schools including academies, free schools, faith schools, university technical colleges, and, in some areas, selective schools.
Parents are able to express at least three preferences when applying for a school place for their child and in some areas they can select six. The vast majority of parents will be allocated a place at one of their preference schools. In 2018, 91.0% were offered their first choice of primary school and 97.7% received offers from one of their top three, while 82.1% were offered their first choice of secondary school and 93.8% received offers from one of their top three.
Parents also have an element of choice around the curriculum their child will follow, such as when their child chooses which qualifications they will work towards during Key Stage 4. In addition, the diverse range of schools available means there are some differences in the curricula they offer. For example, academies and free schools have the freedom to determine their own curriculum, tailored to meet the needs of the pupils, as long as the curriculum is broad and balanced.