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Academies: Admissions

Volume 467: debated on Tuesday 13 November 2007

To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families what mechanism is available to (a) local authorities and (b) the Government to ensure that academy schools take appropriate numbers of (i) special educational needs students and (ii) students entitled to free school meals. (163100)

Academies are fully inclusive schools and they are established in partnership with local authorities. Their funding agreements set out that they are required to comply with admissions law and the statutory School Admissions Code. They are also part of their local school admissions fora. They must have regard to the SEN code of practice and statutory guidance on inclusion.

The National Foundation for Educational Research and the Local Government Association published a report in summer 2006 entitled "Admissions: Who Goes Where". The report found that academies on average admit more pupils with SEN (both with and without statements) than other schools in England. Academies also, on average, admit more SEN pupils (both with and without statements) than their predecessor schools. The report also found that academies admit higher proportions of pupils eligible for FSM than the proportion living in the local postcode districts.

To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families what proportion of pupil entrants are admitted on the basis of aptitude in each academy school; and if he will make a statement. (163562)