Eight new flagship schools set to open across the county

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THERE will be eight new free schools opening their doors in Yorkshire at the start of the next academic year bringing the total in the region up to 20.

A Department for Education (DfE) spokesman said that eight of nine schools were set to open on time this year as planned.

However the Khalsa Engineering Academy, a primary free school in Bradford has had its opening put back a year because of a delay in securing a permanent site.

The Government and local council are working to find school places for pupils who had chosen to go there from this September.

The DfE spokesman said: “It is essential that all free school sites meet the needs of the school, while offering value for money for the taxpayer. Due to a delay in securing a permanent site, Khalsa Engineering Academy will now open in September 2015. We will work with the council to help parents find places for their children, and with the proposers behind Khalsa Engineering Academy to work towards a successful opening in September 2015 .”

The schools which are set to open in Yorkshire this year include the Aspire Academy, which will provide alternative provision in Hull, the Chapeltown Academy - a sixth form specialising in academic subjects in Sheffield, and three “alternative provision” academies in Leeds, Doncaster and North East Lincolnshire which will be run by the School Partnership Trust Academies chain.

The Ruth Gorse Academy, which is set to become one of the biggest free schools in the country, will open this year in Morley before moving to a purpose built Leeds city centre site in 2016.

The Dixons Free School is set to open in Bradford, this September, run by an academy group which already runs four schools in the city.

The XP School in Doncaster is also set to open this month.

It will be teaching children through “expeditionary learning” where the curriculum is taught through a series of large projects rather than in separate subject lessons.

The free school which will have just 350 pupils once its full is opening with a full year seven year group of 50 pupils.

However the first day of school will not be held in Doncaster but with a four day trip to Wales.

The vision for a school using expeditionary learning has been driven by its founder Gwyn ap Harri, a former teacher, who says he was inspired after seeing it in action in a charter school in San Diego.

The Khalsa Engineering Academy is now one of five free schools set to open in Yorkshire next year along with Elements Primary School in Barnsley, Hunsley Primary in Brough and the Elliott Hudson College and the Temple Learning Academy in Leeds.

There are currently 12 free schools open across Yorkshire including six in Bradford.