Schools Land, Building and Trusts
The £75m Public Sector Decarbonisation Scheme 2 (PSDS2) will be launched on 7th April for public sector bodies, including all maintained schools to support energy efficient heating and decarbonisation projects. More details can be found here This phase follows on from the oversubscribed £1bn fund which closed to applications in January. Please do let us know if you apply.
Last year the DfE produced a guidance note on managing buildings during partial opening which contains useful information and areas to be aware of including water, gas and fire safety.
It is of course always good practice for premises managers and SLT to undertake frequent visual checks of all school buildings and grounds to ensure that there are no obvious issues with roofs, windows or pests..
The DfE has included a short section on estate management on P67 in their Schools Coronavirus (Covid 19) Operational Guidance
The DfE are now embarking upon Condition Data Collection 2 (CDC2) and will be using consultants to undertake property data collection visits to all schools in England during the next 5 years.
More information on the CDC2 is available here
Schools to be visited in tranches 1 and 2 are listed here
Last year the Church of England’s General Synod set new targets for all parts of the church to work to become carbon ‘net zero’ by 2030. A 2012/13 energy audit of church buildings showed that over 50% of carbon emissions are from our schools. We know that many schools have since installed solar panels or LED lighting, taken out SALIX loans or introduced their own recycling or eco school initiatives. We would love to know more about what you and your pupils are doing to reduce carbon emissions and tackle climate change. We will include details of a survey in this e-newsletter in the summer term, so that we can hear more from you.
School Condition Allocation
From April 2020 the School Condition Allocation (SCA) replaced the Locally Coordinated Voluntary Aided Programme (LCVAP) capital funding stream. In order to access this funding for its VA schools, the diocese has entered into new terms & conditions with the DfE.
The new terms highlight that the following areas must be considered by schools when considering projects and by the diocese when allocating funding and managing the school estate:
- Good estate management
- Procurement, value for money and sound financial conduct
- Working with site trustees
School Condition Allocation Funding Request
All VA schools should complete the Capital Premises Development Plan form annually and submit to the diocese. If you are seeking SCA funding you will also need to complete the section regarding the maintenance projects which you would like to be considered for SCA funding in 2021/22.
If you have any queries please contact Heather Broadbent at firstname.lastname@example.org
Funding and support to set up a digital education platform
A number of schools have already accessed the DfE’s Digital Platform Grant for primary and secondary schools. Click the links below for more information from the DfE.
The Diocese schools currently fall into three categories Academies, Voluntary Controlled and Voluntary Aided Schools. These have very distinct differences relating to their buildings but one commonality in regard to the land and buildings. The land and buildings are owned by the diocese generally under ancient trust deeds that have as the original Trustees Vicar and Church Wardens. There are numerous variations however it is helpful to generalise, at the same time as recognising the need to investigate fully the individual sites when required.
The Diocese’ role is to assist schools in safe guarding their assets of both the value of the buildings and land. To this end any alterations, extensions, expansions, and changes to the building generally require the permission of the Diocese. The Diocese particularly assists Voluntary Aided Schools in advising on building development and capital asset planning.
Academies: Land and buildings are held by Diocese and playing fields retained by Local Authority (LA) on a 125 year Lease.
Voluntary Controlled: Land and buildings held by Diocese and playing fields by LA. In 1944 VC Schools came under the LA and therefore they are responsible for maintenance of the buildings.
Voluntary Aided: Land and buildings held by Diocese and playing fields by LA. They remain as voluntary aided and funded schools supported by their local parish and are more independently funded. This gives the school access to different capital funding streams but also liabilities and obligations. Primarily the requirement to pay governors 10% on all capital funded projects including Devolved Formula Capital and Local Authority Co-ordinated Voluntary Aided Programme (LCVAP). They also unlike LA are required to pay VAT.
Devolved Capital Funding
2020-21 Allocations of DFC for all schools can be found at this link by selecting the appropriate tab on the spreadsheet
The governing body of a VA school has a statutory liability to pay 10% on any capital works using SCA or DFC funding.