A collaboration between academy chain heavyweights to set up a higher education institution to train expert teachers has won funding in the first round of the Teaching and Leadership Innovation Fund, according to a leaked list of winners.
The names of projects due to split the government’s teacher development funding pot have surfaced after a list was sent to unsuccessful bidders.
The £75 million fund was launched by Justine Greening to pay for professional development for teachers and school leaders to “galvanise social mobility” in the government’s so-called “opportunity areas”.
The successful bidders include RM Literacy Ltd, Edison Learning, the Teacher Development Trust, STEM Learning Ltd, Teach First, and the Institute for Physics. They will work at a national level.
Meanwhile, the Institute for Teaching (IfT) is the sole recipient of funding to cover the north and central England.
The IfT is a partnership involving three prominent academy trusts – Ark, Dixons and Oasis – which aims to help teachers achieve a master’s qualification in order to tackle the recruitment crisis in challenging schools.
The proposal, first revealed by Schools Week, was described when it was announced as the largest-ever collaboration between multi-academy trusts on teacher development.
The last tranche of the funding, which covers the south of England, will go to Anvil Education Limited, a company owned by government behaviour tsar Tom Bennett.
Although the exact amount handed to each company has not been revealed, they will receive millions between them.
According to an earlier tender document, the government capped the first round of funding at £45 million. A second round will be held this autumn.
However the list of winners has prompted criticism. Education blogger Graham Brown-Martin, who first published the leaked list, accused the government of favouring its policy supporters.
Schools Week understands the companies are currently going through the 10-day mandatory standstill period for public sector contracts, and are unable to comment on the tender.
The DfE says it carried out an “open procurement” for the first round of the fund, but won’t say more until the end of the standstill period.
As revealed by Schools Week earlier this month, Ark had originally also planned to bid for cash from the TLIF scheme to support a teacher training programme in the north.
However, the trust pulled out of submitting a bid after it emerged the fund would not cover initial teacher training projects.