Academies are publicly funded independent schools in England.
Academies are set up as charitable companies. They are run by a board of governors who are also the company directors. They are exempt charities, which means they are not required to register with the Charity Commission.
Schools that become academies will:
- be removed from local authority control;
- have their own board of governors;
- have control of their land, buildings, staffing,curriculum, salaries, etc;
- be free from following the National Curriculum;
- be able to make operational changes, such as changing the length of terms and school days;
- conform to national admissions regulations;
- not have to conform to the School Teachers’ Pay and Conditions Document; and
- be expected to act as a partner to less successful schools.
On opening, academies have two sets of staff until harmonisation is reached – transferred staff from the previous school and new staff recruited to the academy. Transferred staff remain protected by their existing terms and conditions of employment for a certain amount of time while new staff are immediately subject to the academy’s rules.