Shrinking pupil numbers: A catalyst for accelerated academisation?

Shrinking pupil numbers: A catalyst for accelerated academisation?

Declining pupil numbers may inadvertently boost the Government’s push towards academisation, as schools face challenges in maintaining enrolment levels.

Two primary schools, Benfield Primary and Hangleton Primary, plan to join the EKO Trust amid falling rolls, highlighting the difficulty in sustaining and developing staff as schools shrink.

This move is seen as a way to run more efficiently by leveraging the Trust’s resources and enhancing professional development opportunities.

However, there’s opposition from Brighton and Hove’s Labour administration, which argues that academisation won’t address the core issue of dropping pupil numbers and will only lead to a more fragmented education system.

The situation is exacerbated by councils’ inability to influence academy admissions, creating a disconnect between local and central Government responsibilities.

This has led to legal challenges, such as in Hackney, where parents are contesting the focus on closing maintained schools only.

The trend towards academisation, driven by the desire for financial efficiency and better staff development opportunities, is raising concerns about the sustainability of local authority involvement in school place planning.

Experts warn that the move towards a more fragmented system could complicate the coordination of school places and deepen the imbalance between local and central Government roles in education.

If you are worried about this issue, please don’t hesitate to reach out to one of our team of financial experts. We are specialists in school and academy finances.

Shrinking pupil numbers: A catalyst for accelerated academisation?

Shrinking pupil numbers: A catalyst for accelerated academisation?