In 2010 the government announced that schools would be given the right to apply to become academies. The academies would cease to be under Local Authority control, manage their own budgets, have the right to negotiate staff contracts and opt out of teaching the National Curriculum. Funding would also increase because Academies would receive the monies used by the Local Authority to provide educational services, in addition to the budget already allocated to the school.

It should be noted that this type of academy status differs entirely from the “sponsored academies” that were introduced by the previous Labour government, which were changes of status given to failing schools in an effort to improve standards.

The opportunity to move to academy status was initially given only to schools that were rated “Outstanding” by OFSTED (the Office for Standards in Education), although other schools were able to express an interest. As of 3 December 2010, the Department for Education (DfE) had received 2,280 expressions of interest from schools.

Of those expressions of interest, 1,137 were from schools designated as “Outstanding” by OFSTED, and 1,143 from other schools. By the end of 2010 there were 158 new academies from the “Outstanding” category. These included 18 grammar and partially selective schools . The figure of 158 has been quoted by opponents of the scheme as proof that it is a failure.

The academy scheme has been controversial, not least because there is concern that creaming off the funds used for central educational services to academies would deprive other, more needy schools of resources.
There were also initial suspicions that grammar schools might lose the statutory protection of requiring a parental ballot before they are turned into comprehensive schools. These fears were denied by the government, which claimed that there would be no change to the selection arrangements for grammar schools that chose to convert. These fears seem to have abated, although some grammar schools may have stepped back from the brink while they wait for more clarification.

Supporters of the scheme claim that it puts control back in the hands of those who know best – the Heads and Governors of successful schools.

Schools that have converted to academy status

This is the latest list of Grammar schools that have converted to Academies as at April 2012, including three partially selective schools (noted with a *).

1Queen Elizabeth’s School, BarnetBarnet
2Kendrick School,Berkshire
3Reading School,Berkshire
4Langley Grammar SchoolBerkshire
5Herschel Grammar SchoolBerkshire
6Slough Grammar SchoolBerkshire
7Bexley GrammarBexley
8Chislehurst and Sidcup Grammar SchoolBexley
9Townley Grammar SchoolBexley
10Bishop Vesey’s Grammar SchoolBirmingham
11King Edwards VI Aston SchoolBirmingham
12King Edward VI Camp Hill School for girlsBirmingham
13King Edward VI Camp Hill School for boysBirmingham
14King Edward VI Five Ways SchoolBirmingham
15King Edward VI Handsworth SchoolBirmingham
16Sutton Coldfield Grammar School for GirlsBirmingham
17Newstead Wood School for GirlsBromley
18Aylesbury Grammar SchoolBucks
19Aylesbury High SchoolBucks
20Chesham Grammar SchoolBucks
21Dr Challoner’s High SchoolBucks
22John Hampden Grammar SchoolBucks
23The Royal Grammar SchoolBucks
24The Royal Latin SchoolBucks
25Sir Henry Floyd Grammar SchoolBucks
26Sir William Borlase’s Grammar SchoolBucks
28Wycombe High SchoolBucks
29Queen Elizabeth SchoolCumbria
29Colyton Grammar SchoolDevon
30Devonport High School for BoysDevon
31Devonport High School for GirlsDevon
32Churston Ferrers Grammar School AcademyDevon
33Torquay Boys’ Grammar SchoolDevon
34Torquay Girls’ Grammar SchoolDevon
35Bournemouth SchoolDorset
36Bournemouth School for GirlsDorset
37Poole Grammar SchoolDorset
38Chelmsford County High SchoolEssex
39King Edward VI Grammar SchoolEssex
40The King John SchoolEssex
41Southend High School for GirlsEssex
42Southend High School for BoysEssex
43Westcliff High School for Boys,Essex
44Shoeburyness High SchoolEssex
45The Crypt SchoolGloucestershire
46Marling SchoolGloucestershire
47Ribston Hall High SchoolGloucestershire
48Pate’s Grammar SchoolGloucestershire
49Sir Thomas Rich’s SchoolGloucestershire
50Stroud High SchoolGloucestershire
51* Watford Grammar School for BoysHertfordshire
52* Watford Grammar School for GirlsHertfordshire
53Barton Court Grammar SchoolKent
54Borden Grammar SchoolKent
55Cranbrook SchoolKent
56Dane Court Grammar SchoolKent
57Dartford Grammar SchoolKent
58Gravesend Grammar SchoolKent
59Highsted Grammar SchoolKent
60Highworth Grammar SchoolKent
61Invicta Grammar SchoolKent
62Mayfield Grammar School (previously Gravesend Grammar School for Girls)Kent
63Oakwood Park Grammar SchoolKent
64Sir Roger Manwood’s SchoolKent
65The Chatham and Clarendon Grammar School FederationKent
67The Folkestone School for GirlsKent
68The Norton Knatchbull SchoolKent
69Tonbridge Grammar SchoolKent
70Weald of Kent Grammar SchoolKent
71*Westlands SchoolKent
72Wilmington Grammar School for BoysKent
73Wilmington Grammar School for GirlsKent
74Heckmondwike Grammar SchoolKirklees
75Bacup and Rawtenstall GrammarSchool
76Clitheroe Royal Grammar SchoolLancashire
77Lancaster Girls’ Grammar SchoolLancashire
78Lancaster Royal Grammar SchoolLancashire
79Bourne Grammar SchoolLincolnshire
80Caistor Grammar SchoolLincolnshire
81Kesteven and Grantham Girls’ SchoolLincolnshire
82Kesteven and Sleaford High School Selective AcademyLincolnshire
83Queen Elizabeth’s Grammar School, HorncastleLincolnshire
84Skegness Grammar SchoolLincolnshire
85Queen Elizabeth’s Grammar AlfordTrafford
86Chatham Grammar School for BoysMedway
87Chatham Grammar School for GirlsMedway
88Fort Pitt Grammar SchoolMedway
89Rainham Mark Grammar SchoolMedway
90Sir Joseph Williamson’s Mathematical SchoolMedway
91The Rochester Grammar SchoolMedway
92Nonsuch High School for Girls, SuttonSurrey
93Sutton Grammar SchoolSurrey
94The Tiffin Girls’ School, KingstonSurrey
95Tiffin School, KingstonSurrey
96Wallington County Grammar SchoolSurrey
97Wallington High School for GirlsSurrey
98Altrincham Grammar School for BoysTrafford
99Altrincham Grammar School for GirlsTrafford
100Loreto Grammar SchoolTrafford
101St Ambrose CollegeTrafford
102Sale Grammar SchoolTrafford
103Urmston Grammar AcademyTrafford
104Queen Mary’s Grammar SchoolWalsall
105Queen Mary’s High schoolWalsall
106Alcester Grammar SchoolWarwickshire
107Ashlawn SchoolWarwickshire
108King Edward VI SchoolWarwickshire
109High SchoolWarwickshire
110Bishop Wordsworth’s Grammar SchoolWiltshire
111Upton Hall School FCJWirral
112West Kirby Grammar SchoolWirral
113Wirral Grammar School for BoysWirral
114Wirral Grammar School for girlsWirral
115The Liverpool Blue Coat SchoolWirral
116The North Halifax Grammar School, CalderdaleYorkshire