Everton Football Club's charity is proposing to launch its own free school in September, and has launched a public consultation to ascertain what locals think of the idea.
The mixed-gender Everton Free School will provide an “alternative learning experience for young people aged 14 to 19 who do not attend school or are at risk of being excluded from school due to challenging personal circumstances”.
The school will be government-funded and run by Everton FC’s official charity, Everton in the Community. Organisers claim it will use “the power of sport to engage pupils and their wider families”.
The charity already runs a variety of community sport, health, education and social development programmes and the free school will be an extension of these, it says.
It will educate 120 pupils in the first year, rising to 200 from year three onwards. In its first year it will operate from the Liverpool Community College Learning Exchange but will move to its own site from its second year on.
Everton is the only Premier League football club to be granted the funds to open a free school.
The public consultation, which can be accessed here, is open until 2 July.
The set-up of the school, including capital and start-up costs, will be funded by the Department for Education. The cost of each place will be provided by whichever body commissions the place for the individual student. The indicative cost per place is £11,000 to £13,000 per year.
A ‘Frequently Asked Questions’ list on the school’s website states that the Everton Free School Trust Board comprises Everton season ticket holders, shareholders and away fans. However, another answer insists that the school will “welcome and support young people irrespective of whether they support Everton Football Club, Liverpool Football Club or have any other sporting or other allegiance”.