Digest of 2023 Census data for schools and colleges in England

February 9, 2024

Image shows young people processing with a painted cross and school banners, in Arundel Cathedral

The Digest of the 2023 Census Data for Schools and Colleges in England is now available on the Catholic Education Service website. This data remains the most accurate and reliable depiction of England’s 2,087 Catholic schools, colleges and academies.

Key findings include:

- 821,549 pupils are educated in English Catholic schools, up 555 from last year.

- Catholic schools make up 9% of the state-funded sector.

- 58% of pupils at state-funded Catholic schools are Catholic.

- 47,307 teachers are employed, 46% of whom are Catholic.

- 45.5% of pupils are from ethnic minorities, compared with a 37.4% England average.

- Catholic schools take in 50% more pupils from the most deprived areas and approximately a quarter fewer pupils from more affluent areas, compared with the state sector.

- There has been a 13% increase in the number of Catholic academies in England since the last census, as more multi-academy trusts are created.

- There are 79 Catholic multi-academy trusts in total.

Additional research revealed that Catholic schools also outperform national GCSE English, Maths and Religious Education averages by up to seven percentage points.