Department for Education written question – answered on 27th May 2022.

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Photo of Lord Watson of Invergowrie Lord Watson of Invergowrie Shadow Spokesperson (Education)

To ask Her Majesty's Government how many schools they expect to convert to academy status though sponsorship or other means between March 2022 and December 2030.

Photo of Baroness Barran Baroness Barran The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Education

The Schools White Paper sets out the department’s intention that by 2030, all children will benefit from being taught in a family of schools, with their school in a strong multi-academy trust, or with plans to join or form one. The best trusts in the system will work where they are needed most, levelling up standards, and transforming previously underperforming schools.

The policies set out in the White Paper will remove barriers that are preventing schools from benefiting from the support of a strong trust, whilst ensuring that all parts of the system can play their part in building a single, coherent system.

Local authorities will be able to add new capacity to the system by establishing new strong trusts. Additionally, the department will ensure there are statutory protections for academies with a religious character, equivalent to those for maintained schools with a religious character. Appropriate financial support will be provided to Dioceses and other religious bodies to enable the growth and establishment of trusts.

Regional directors will engage local partners to determine the best way to develop a strong trust landscape that suits their area, investing up to £86 million over the next three years in building trust capacity, focused particularly on Education Investment Areas.

The department is keen to continue engaging with the sector on how best to achieve a fully trust-led system by 2030.

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