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General Information


INFORMATION ON THE STATUS SETUP OF 

CHURCH OF ENGLAND SCHOOLS

Approximately 1 million children attend Church of England schools, with 4443 (25%) of all primary and middle schools the responsibility of the CofE and 221 (6.25%) of all secondary school the responsibility of the CofE. The schools include infant, junior, primary, middle, all age, secondary schools and academies.

With more than 130 sponsored and 350 converter academies, the Church of England is the biggest Education provider in England.

(Figures on this page last updated November 2013)

Voluntary Controlled (VC) Schools

There are 2,307 VC schools, comprised of 2281 Primary schools and 26 Secondary schools. VC schools are 'managed' by the LA whilst maintaining their distinctive characteristics.

The key characteristics of a VC school are:

  • No one group of governors is in a majority. Church or Foundation governors are in a minority
  • The LA employs the staff, but they are appointed by the governors
  • The LA is responsible for admissions arrangements
  • The LA can advise the governing body; the DDE may be given the same opportunity to advise
  • RE taught is the LA agreed syllabus and worship reflects the Anglican tradition

Voluntary Aided (VA) Schools

There are 1,957 VA schools, comprised of 1,888 Primary schools and 69 Secondary schools . VA schools are required to contribute to capital funding in return for more autonomy for the Church

The key characteristics of a VA school are:

  • The Church or Foundation governors are an absolute majority
  • The governors appoint and employ all staff
  • Governors are responsible for admissions arrangements, approved by the 'religious authority' as defined in the Admissions Code
  • The LA and the DDE have similar rights to attend governors meetings and to advise
  • Governors determine the RE syllabus which should reflect the Anglican tradition and worship reflects the Anglican tradition

Foundation Schools

39 Church schools became grant maintained and are now Foundation Schools. In these schools:

  • No one group of governors is in a majority. Church or Foundation governors are in a minority
  • The governors appoint and employ all staff
  • Governors are responsible for admissions arrangements, approved by the 'religious authority' as defined in the Admissions Code
  • The LA can advise the governing body: the DDE may be given the same opportunity to advise
  • RE taught is the LA agreed syllabus and worship reflects the Anglican tradition

Academies (pre 2010 Academies Act)

These are state funded independent schools with considerable powers of self-determination. The C of E, through the dioceses, is either sponsor, co-sponsor or a key partner in over forty academies all located in areas of considerable deprivation. The academies are key part of the Church's mission to those communities in need of regeneration and they provide beacons of hope and success. There are 80 'sponsored' Church of England academies, 43 of which are secondary academies (November 2013).

Academies (created post 2010 Academies Act)

Outstanding schools and schools ranked good with outstanding features by Ofsted can now become academies. All other schools will also be eligible, providing they work in partnership with a high-performing school that will help drive improvement. These do not require a sponsor but enjoy the same freedoms as other academies. The religious designation and other key characteristics (such as the admissions policy) remain. Church schools wishing to convert must have the approval of the trustees - usually the DBE. There are 277 'converter' Church of England academies, 76 of which are secondary academies (November 2013).

Affiliated Schools

Many dioceses run schemes whereby schools can affiliate to and enjoy the benefits of being part of the Church school family.

Independent schools

There are over 200 independent schools designated as having a Church of England or Anglican character.