Social Emotional Mental Health (SEMH) Free School – Hartlepool Local Authority

Hartlepool Local Authority are pleased to announce that following a successful bid to the Department for Education (DfE) in October 2018, approval has been given in March 2019 for an SEMH Free School to be commissioned in Hartlepool.  The bid forms part of a joint Special and Alternative Provision free schools wave launched in July 2018 by the DfE.

Hartlepool Local Authority has been selected as one of 39 successful local authority bids for Special and Alternative Provision free schools.

Hartlepool Local Authority have strategic responsibility for special education and alternative provision in Hartlepool and are also responsible for the commissioning and funding of places in Special Schools and Alternative Provision. This free school forms part of the town wide SEMH graduated response to meet young people’s needs and is part of the local authorities’ strategy for children and young people with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND)

The Local Authority via the DfE submission process is seeking proposals from providers who can demonstrate a commitment to partnership working to create a school that will deliver a high quality provision that meets the needs of Hartlepool’s children and young people.  The school will provide an opportunity for children to achieve good outcomes, leading to improved transitions and early preparation for adulthood.

Further information for prospective proposers

The specification for our school and can be found below or can be viewed on DfE website

The Local Authority, working closely with our partners and the Parent Carer Forum ‘1 Hart, 1 Mind, 1 Future’ have held two engagmemt events on 20th May and 1st July 2019. The presentations from these events and the 'Love Hartlepool' film can be accessed below.

Please note, the Hartlepool Specification document has been updated to include the increase in places to 50 including 5 rotating assessment places and a specific designation for boys.

Hartlepool Special Free School Specification 

Hartlepool Engagement Event Presentation 20th May 2019  Hartlepool Engagement Event Presentation 1st July 2019 Love Hartlepool Film

SEMH Banding Range Descriptors & Guidance  

Tees Valley Special School Presentation 1st July 2019

DfE Guidance & Criteria for proposer groups interested in applying to set up a special or alternative provision free school


In the first instance please direct any queries you may have to and your query will be directed to the most appropriate person.