To help parents looking for a place to raise their children, we’ve scored every local authority in England, based on the availability of school places, the percentage of ‘good’ or ‘outstanding’ Ofsted grades, the affordability of housing, and crime rates.
Here you can find the best and worst performing local authorities in each region of England.
East of England
Central Bedfordshire ranks as the top local authority in the East of England and as the eighth best authority nationally. This is largely due to its high availability of school places (19%) and high Ofsted rating, with 88% of schools scoring a ‘good’ or ‘outstanding’ grade.
Thurrock ranked as the worst in the region, and the thirteenth worst in England, with schools oversubscribed by 5% (the third highest in the country), and the average wage being less than a tenth (9.8%) of the typical house price.
Rutland was named the best local authority in the East Midlands and the top authority in England. This was mainly due to educational factors, with 34% of school places available – the best availability rate in the country – despite ranking eighth nationally for Ofsted ratings. An impressive 95% of its schools were considered good or outstanding in their latest inspection. Additionally, Rutland had the second lowest crime rate in the country, with only 41 crimes per 1,000 people.
Leicester was the lowest ranked authority in the region, and the third lowest in the country. This was due to the city ranking poorly for crime, with 123 crimes per 1,000 people, and only 2% of school places available.
Sutton was found to be the best local authority in London. A large part of this was the high percentage (95%) of schools with a ‘good’ or ‘outstanding’ Ofsted rating, as well as low crime levels, with 60 crimes per 1,000 people.
Enfield, meanwhile, ranked as the worst authority in London, and the second worst in the country, thanks to its low availability of school places (5%) and its expensive housing, with the average wage just 6% of the typical house price (£396,000).
Stockton-on-Tees ranked as the top authority in the North East, and the fourth best in England. This is because Stockton’s schools are undersubscribed by 16%, and 94% of its institutions achieved ‘good’ or ‘outstanding’ Ofsted grades.
On the other hand, Middlesbrough ranked as the worst authority in the region, due to its low availability of school places (3%) and its high crime rate (160 crimes per 1,000 people).
In the North West, Cumbria ranked as the top authority, as well as the second best in the country. A big reason for this was the high availability of school places (21%), and housing affordability, with wages representing 15% of the average property price.
Salford was the lowest scoring authority in the region, with low availability of school places (3%), and only 81% of schools achieving a top Osted grade. Salford’s high crime levels (121 per 1,000 people) also negatively affected its score.
West Berkshire achieved the highest ranking in the South East, as well as the sixth best in the country, thanks to its high percentage of available school places (17%) and low crime levels (57 crimes per 1,000 people).
Reading, on the other hand, ranked as the worst authority in the region. This was due to the fact that its schools are oversubscribed by 5%, and below average for Ofsted grades (85% ‘good’ or ‘outstanding’).
Bath and North East Somerset was found to be the best authority in the South West, due to having the fourth most available school places in England (25%), and low crime rates (62 crimes per 1,000 people).
Bristol, however, ranked as the worst authority in the region, and the worst in England, due in part to limited available school places (2%) and low percentage of schools with a top Ofsted grade (84%). Affordable housing was also found to be an issue, with wages averaging just 9% of the typical house price.
Herefordshire was the top-ranking authority in the West Midlands, and the third best authority in the country. This was due to Herefordshire’s low crime rate (56 crimes per 1,000 people) and high percentage of top Ofsted grades (93%).
In contrast, Stoke-on-Trent was named the worst authority in the region, thanks to the fact that its schools are oversubscribed by 2%, and only 77% of its schools were rated ‘good’ or ‘outstanding’ by Ofsted, the eighth lowest in the country.
Yorkshire and the Humber
The East Riding of Yorkshire ranked as the best authority in the region, and fifth best in England, due in part to its high availability of school places (25%). Its houses are also highly affordable, with the average wage (£24,000) being 13% of its mean house price (£184,000).
Bradford was found to be the worst authority in Yorkshire and the Humber, with only 4% of school places available, and a high crime rate (141 crimes per 1,000 people).
If you are unhappy with the education options near you but don’t want to move, home schooling is a good alternative. To find out more about home education and how it works, visit: https://www.oxfordhomeschooling.co.uk/general/what-is-homeschooling-how-does-it-work/
Greg is the Head Of Operations at Oxford Home Schooling and has more than 25 years of experience in Distance Learning and Home Education