Education secretary Michael Gove is to allow popular state schools to increase their intake, according to The Daily Telegraph.
Mr Gove said the move will help more parents secure a place for their children at their favoured school, and encourage local authorities to tackle under-performing schools, whose pupil numbers are likely to dwindle under the new plans.
Struggling schools will suffer financially if pupil numbers fall, with their funding determined by the size of intake.
Mr Gove’s proposals will be outlined in a revised school admissions code to be published this summer.
The government suspects that councils often prevent good schools from raising their intake because it becomes harder to support weaker schools when pupil numbers drop significantly.
Mr Gove, left, said: “We hope the new admissions code allows the possibility of increasing planned admissions numbers so good schools can expand, and there will be under-performing schools that have fewer and fewer numbers. That will compel their leadership and the local authority to ask what’s wrong.
“I think it’s wrong to have a situation where the local authority says: ‘This is a good school, it’s full up, parents have to go to the less good school down the road’. Because, as a result of the local authority’s failure to deal with educational under-performance, children continue to go to a poor school.”