Frequently Asked Questions

Is this a free school?

Yes. Free schools are independent, state-funded schools. They have the same legal status as academies.

Will the school be able to make a profit?

No. The school will be run on a not-for-profit basis by Derby Diocesan Academy Trust. The school will be run by the Headteacher and their leadership team and they will be answerable to a board of governors.

Where is Derby Cathedral School situated?

We opened in September 2018 in temporary accommodation at Midland House (Nelson Street, Derby DE1 2SA), whilst our brand new state-of-the-art facilities are being developed on the permanent site located at the western half of the former Friar Gate Goods Yard site. The development and construction of the permanent site and buildings are expected to take three years.

Why are you proposing to open with only Year 7 classes?

Our proposed intake reflects where demand for places has been identified. When starting a new school we believe that it is really important to nurture the first year and establish the culture of the new school. Our first Year 7 classes will also be our first classes to take GCSEs and we will be able to work with them exclusively for their first year to establish solid foundations for their success.

Will the school be selective?

No. Derby Cathedral School will welcome students of all abilities, of all faiths and none. All free schools have to follow the Admissions Code in the same way as all state-funded schools and our inclusive admissions policy will at all times be open, transparent and fair.

How were the admissions arrangements developed?

The admissions policy for Derby Cathedral School was developed using the Department for Education’s model admissions policy for new schools. Our vision for Derby Cathedral School to be open to all regardless of faith and background is reflected in the policy.

What is the catchment area for Derby Cathedral School?

There is no catchment area for Derby Cathedral School. The school will be based in the centre of Derby and seeks to serve all communities within the City. Places are allocated in accordance with our admissions policy. If more than 180 applications are received, places will be allocated in line with the published oversubscription criteria and distance will only be used in the event of a tie-break whereby the place will be offered to the student living closest to the school site.

Will the school have a SEND department?

Mr M Chapple is our SENDCO.

Derby Cathedral School has a full-time SENDCO to support the needs of any students who are identified as requiring support with their learning. The SENDCO has QTS and works with teachers and learning support staff, as well as students directly, to make sure that specific learning needs applicable to each SEND student are identified early and met. The SENDCO ensures that detailed plans with measurable targets are in place for all students on the SEND Register. The SENDCO forms part of the senior leadership team at the school and therefore works closely with the Headteacher to ensure the curriculum at the school is accessible for all students.

Will Derby Cathedral School be inspected by Ofsted?

Yes. The school will be subject to inspection in the same way as other maintained schools and academies. All new schools are inspected by Ofsted before they open. The school will also be subject to a SIAMS (Statutory Inspection of Anglican and Methodist Schools) inspection.

How will the school be accountable?

The school will be run by a local board of governors who will be accountable to Derby Diocesan Academy Trust, who oversee it. In addition, the school will be accountable to the Department for Education through the terms of its Funding Agreement.

What will be the structure of the School Governing Body?

The Local Governing Body will have the following membership:

3 governors appointed by the Cathedral Chapter

3 governors appointed by DDAT

2 elected parent governors 

2 elected staff governors


What are the timings for the school day?

The school day begins with breakfast club starting at 08.00, followed by registration in tutor groups and a morning act of collective worship at 8.45am. Collective worship will be led by a member of school staff, the school chaplain, a member of the school Governing Body or a representative of the Cathedral. Formal learning starts at 9.15am and the core day ends at 3.15pm to be succeeded by a range of school enrichment options operating through to 4:30pm to widen the school curriculum and provide additional opportunities for skills acquisition in areas beyond the formal curriculum. Enrichment also offers personal development opportunities.

How can I apply for a place?

Please see the Admissions section of the website 

How can I be kept updated on the school’s progress?

The school communicates with parents across several key platforms:

-This website under 'Latest News' 

-SZapp for current parents and carers

-Regular school newsletters published on this website, available in print at the school reception

-Our Facebook page (search for Derby Cathedral School)

-Our Twitter account (@DerbyCathSchool)