There were "grave concerns" about education standards at a West Sussex free school, which has been ordered to shut in the first of such case in England.
Schools Minister Lord Nash said he was terminating the Discovery New School's funding agreement. In a letter to the school's chairman of governors Chris Cook, he wrote:
None of the school's teachers were delivering good lessons and all were still consistently inadequate or required improvement.
I recognise that my decision to terminate the funding agreement is likely to be disappointing for pupils, parents and all those involved with the school, but I will not allow a failing school to continue with no clear, workable plan to improve rapidly. It is not in the best interests of pupils to remain in an inadequate school.
The sudden demise of the Discovery New School is likely to undermine confidence in Education Secretary Michael Gove's flagship programme.
Parents and governors at the Discovery New School in Crawley have expressed their dismay after it became the first free school to be closed.