Voluntary controlled school

Voluntary Controlled School

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Voluntary controlled school

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A voluntary controlled school is a state-funded school in England, Wales and Northern Ireland in which a foundation or trust (usually a Christian denomination) has some formal influence in the running of the school. Such schools have less autonomy than voluntary aided schools, in which the foundation pays part of any building costs.


Prior to the Education Act 1944, voluntary schools were those associated with a foundation, usually a religious group.That Act imposed higher standards on school facilities, and offered voluntary schools a choice in funding the costs this would incur.
  • Voluntary controlled schools would have all their costs met by the state, but would be controlled by the Local Education Authority.
  • Voluntary aided schools would be only partly funded by the state, with the foundation responsible for 50% of capital works but having greater influence over the school.
The Roman Catholic Church chose to retain control of its schools, while more than half of Church of England schools became voluntary controlled.


Voluntary controlled schools are a kind of "maintained school", meaning that they are funded by central government via the local authority, and do not charge fees to students.The land and buildings are typically owned by a charitable foundation, which also appoints about a quarter of the school governors.However, the Local Education Authority employs the school's staff and has primary...
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