Toby Young named new director of New Schools Network

Author and journalist Toby Young has been named the new director of New Schools Network (NSN), the government backed charity to support and promote the opening of free schools.

Young, who is known for his book ‘How to Lose Friends and Alienate People’, will take up the role from January and has said he believes the target of opening 500 new free schools by 2020 isn’t ambitious enough and should be raised to 750.

He replaces Nick Timothy, who left the NSN to become joint chief of staff for Prime Minister Theresa May.

Young has long been a proponent of the free schools movement, being among the first to open a free school back in 2011. The West London Free School in Hammersmith proved so popular that Young went on to open three more as part of the West London Free School Academies Trust.

Speaking of his appointment, Young said: “I have been banging the drum for free schools since 2009. I helped set up four of them and I believe passionately in the free school programme. This seemed like a fantastic opportunity to continue the work I had already being doing.”

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