Somerset

Two schools in Frome apply for free school status

Two groups have applied to the government to set up independent schools in Frome.

Bruton Steiner School already has a fee paying school in the county, but wants to expand into state education.

Parents want to set up Frome Free School, where pupils would choose what they want to learn and not follow the national curriculum.

The National Union of Teachers (NUT) says free schools are not accountable and do not have qualified teachers.

'No demand'

Tim Storey, from Frome Free School, said: "The thought of having a school without a curriculum, without formal teaching and without exams that is a part of the state system is totally exciting to be involved in.

"I'd always felt that the state system certainly had its problems. I think a lot of what kids do is largely a waste of time, that the socialisation is over played and not always so positive."

But Robin Head, secretary of Somerset NUT said he understood parents' frustration with the state system however he did not agree with free schools.

"There's no real great demand for this in the Frome area. This is a handful of individuals - albeit well meaning - but there's no real great demand there.

"It would just take funds away from the majority of children in Frome."

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