Education Secretary Michael Gove has given the go-ahead to a number of new free schools in the region.
Controversial Free Schools have defied their critics and opened today in Bedford and Beccles.
Two controversial Free Schools have opened for the first time in Suffolk and Bedfordshire
A Norwich Free School, the Sir Isaac Newton Sixth Form, has moved into the city's Old Fire Station.
The sixth form, which specialises in maths and science, has been running in temporary classrooms for two terms while the listed building was converted into a school.
The architects have retained many of the features of the old fire station, creating open spaces for students to gather.
The tender hall where the fire engines were kept is now a lecture theatre.
The Principal, Dr Mark Evans, says the building will add to the students' learning experience.
"It speaks of 70 years of fire engines parked in this very spot, of course the poles in the corner of the room are listed and the doors themselves have been kept, though we've put in a little extra glass."
"The whole space will always say fire station, important norwich heritage, as well as cutting edge science school."
Tomorrow evening at 7pm, the school will hold an open day, both for prospective parents and for visitors interested in the building's story.
The city centre site of a new free school in Norwich has been unveiled.
Jane Austen College will open in September next year in office buildings currently occupied by Aviva in Colegate.
The five-storey premises will include an auditorium for drama, library, music rooms and study areas for pupils.
Work will begin once Aviva has moved out in March.
The secondary school and sixth form will specialise in English and the humanities.
It will offer places to 180 pupils in Year 7 and 100 in the sixth form when it opens in 2014.
The Schools Minister, Lord Nash, has spent a second day in Norfolk looking at how to turn around some of the county's beleagured schools.
He visited the Isaac Newton Free School in Norwich, which is due to open next term, as a specialist science and maths sixth form, in the city's historic former fire station.
Click below to watch a report by ITV News Anglia's Kate Prout
It's emerged the government gave two 'free' schools in Suffolk more than £1.5 million each to help them in their first year of operation.
Both Saxmundham and Beccles Free Schools opened in 2012. Each was given £1.6 million in addition to their regular per-pupil funding.
The figures were published by the Department for Education, following a Freedom of Information request. The department said the funding was essential to meet the additional costs of starting a new school.
The Government has spent almost £60 million supporting the first 76 free schools. Around 200 more are due to open from this September onwards.
Plans have been put to Norfolk City Council to convert the former fire station in Bethel Street Norwich into the country's first free school specialising in maths and science.
If the plans get the go ahead the Isaac newton Sixth Form will open in September with an initial intake of 220 pupils with a further 200 the following year.
As the building is Grade II listed many of the original features will have to be kept including the iconic wooden doors and the drill tower.
A public consultation will continue until March 1st with a final decision made on May 10th.
Bedford Free School has said it will open as planned next month even though the council has refused it planning permission.
An appeal was rejected by Bedford Borough Council last night over fears of traffic congestion, but despite the setback the school believes it is legally entitled to operate. Russell Hookey reports.
Bedford Free School says it will open on the 6th September; even though it was denied planning permission by Bedford Borough Council for the second time on Monday night.
The application had been recommended for approval by council officers, but the planning committee voted against it after raising concerns about child safety, congestion and parents picking up and dropping off pupils on Cauldwell Street.
In response the Governors of Bedford Free School have issued the following statement:
"We will be opening in September as planned and I take this opportunity to thank our parents for their magnificent and loyal support."
“We have legal advice which says that the building already has the required planning permission, as granted to leasees Bedford College earlier in the year. We have the approval of the Government department which is funding the school, plus Ofsted approval and the support of parents and pupils.
"We have an appeal against the planning decision scheduled for 25th September and we will win. In the meantime we have the important business of a school to open and pupils to welcome."