What is an Academy?
Academies are schools that are publicly-funded, but independent of the local authority. They benefit from greater freedoms to innovate and raise standards.
Academies receive the same level of funding from the Education Funding Agency (EFA) as they would have from the local authority, but also an additional sum to cover the services that are no longer provided for them by the local authority. However, academies have greater freedom over how they use their budgets to best benefit their pupils.
The principles of governance are the same in academies as in maintained schools, but the governing body has greater autonomy. Therefore, academies are required to have at least two parent governors.
Academies are still required to follow the law and guidance on admissions, special educational needs (SEN) and exclusions, as if they were maintained schools.
Academies have to ensure that the school will be at the heart of its community, collaborating and sharing facilities and expertise with other schools and the wider community. Collaboration and partnership are now embedded in the school system, and this is also the case for academies.
The Freedom of Information (FOI) Act (2000) applies to academies, as it does to maintained schools.