On 16 March, the Government published ‘Creating Opportunity for All: Our Vision for Alternative Provision’: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/alternative-provision. This sets out the Government’s vision to ensure that all Alternative Provision (AP) settings provide high quality education.
If an AP provider is registered as an independent school it is subject to the regulatory regime for independent schools and must meet the independent school standards prescribed in regulations. If it does not do so, there is a process set out in the Education and Skills Act 2008 designed to ensure that such schools either improve or can be removed from the register of independent schools, which obliges them to close.
A consultation by the Department on regulation of independent schools, covering proposed guidance on the standards and an enforcement policy, concluded on 5 June and responses are still being considered.
In all cases, the local authority or school acting as the commissioner should assure themselves that the setting is registered where appropriate and that provision is delivered by high quality staff with suitable training, experience and safeguarding checks.
The Government will look closely at any relevant findings gathered and produced by the Education Select Committee as part of its inquiry into Alternative Provision.