School Organisation and Provision Planning
The co-ordination and management of all Education place planning is located in the Children, Families and Communities (CFC) directorate of the County Council.
The Council has a statutory duty to secure sufficient childcare to enable parents to take up or remain in work and training; secure free early years education for all eligible young children in their area; and undertake an assessment of the sufficiency of childcare places in its area at least every 3 years, with an annual update, and publish the assessments in the prescribed manner (Childcare Act 2006)
The Council also has a duty (under the Education Act 1996) to ensure there are sufficient school places to accommodate the children and young people who reside in the county and to ensure these places are of good quality with sufficient capacity to promote parental choice and diversity and to undertake an assessment of the sufficiency of school places in its area with annual updates.
The 2011 Education Act requires that, where a need for a new school is identified, the Council invites proposals to establish a free school, with the decision over whether to go ahead ultimately taken by the Secretary of State for Education.
Section 14 of the Education Act 1996 places a duty on LAs to secure educational provision made for pupils age 16 – 18 and over 19 years, and those with special educational needs.
Section 315 requires LAs to keep their arrangements for Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND) provision under review.