Half of schools will miss out on rebuilds – as only 61 more handed cash

More than 1,100 schools applied for Boris Johnson's school rebuilding programme, but numbers are capped at 500

More than 1,100 schools applied for Boris Johnson's school rebuilding programme, but numbers are capped at 500

12 Jul 2022, 10:31

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More than half of schools seeking building replacements or repairs will not get cash under prime minister Boris Johnson’s flagship rebuilding programme.

The Department for Education plans to support 500 projects over a decade, but revealed today 1,105 schools had applied during a four-week application window earlier this year.

It means 54.8 per cent of applicants are likely to miss out. The DfE has previously admitted £11.4 billion of repairs are needed across England.

New education secretary James Cleverly confirmed another 61 successful applicants today (full list below), with officials suggesting work will begin “immediately”.

Other schools left waiting to hear on funding

The first 100 were unveiled last year. The DfE had previously planned to reveal the “majority” of the remaining 400 in this third round. But today’s announcement appears to have been fast-tracked, in Cleverly’s first major announcement as a cabinet minister in Johnson’s caretaker government.

The DfE said it wanted to address poor conditions “as soon as possible”. It said up to 300 more successful applicants would be announced “provisionally” by the end of this financial year, subject to due diligence. “We are still assessing all other nominations received and have not ruled out any nominated schools from selection at this point.”

At least 39 schools will therefore have to wait until 2023 at the earliest to find out if they have been successful, despite selection being based partly on site information the department has held since it surveyed buildings between 2017 and 2019. The DfE also said earlier this year projects will only “enter delivery at a rate of 50 per year”.

Schools had to show ‘severe need’

Schools had to show they had at least 1200 square metres of “severe condition need” to apply. The government has said it prioritised applications with “structural or safety issues that mean a block is not fit for use or is likely to become unfit for use imminently because it poses a risk to users”.

Second priority were applications showing “severe deterioration” in external walls, roofs, windows or doors. Third were mechanical and electrical systems “close to failure” which could force block closure in the near-future, but only if schools had other needs that made refurbishments or rebuilds “most efficient”.

A DfE spokesperson said the plans would “transform education for thousands of pupils”, with sports halls, music rooms, science labs and dining areas among areas receiving investment.

Cleverly said the programme was already “creating greener school sites that are fit for the future”, with promises that new buildings will be net-zero carbon when “in operation”.

Framwellgate School Durham is among the successful applicants unveiled today.

Its head Andy Byers has regularly spoken out about the condition of the school since a planned rebuild was ditched in 2010, when the new Conservative-Liberal Democrat government scrapped its Labour predecessors’ “Building Schools for the Future” programme.

He said he was “absolutely delighted”, calling his 1960s-built site “old and tired and very poorly designed”.

One in 13 schools built before 1900

The DfE’s analysis found eight per cent of the school estate comprises blocks built before 1900, while 9 per cent is made up of blocks dating back to the first half of the 20th century.

The rest of the school estate comprises blocks built in the 1950s (7 per cent), 1960s (15 per cent), 1970s (13 per cent), 1980s (8 per cent), 1990s (10 per cent), the noughties (15 per cent). A final 15 per cent comprise buildings from between 2011 and 2020.

Schools Week revealed last month almost a third of schools’ buildings include materials either at the end of their shelf life or that pose a “serious risk of imminent failure”.

The latest 61 schools unveiled


Four Oaks Primary School

New Oscott Primary School

Welsh House Farm Community School and Special Needs Resources Base


Ilkley Grammar School


Malorees Junior School

Cheshire West and Chester

Upton-by-Chester High School

County Durham

Ferryhill Station Primary School

Framwellgate School Durham

St Leonard’s Catholic School


Thomas More Catholic School


Polam Hall School


Becket Primary School

Pear Tree Infant School


Friesland School

Newhall Community Junior School


Northolt High School


Chace Community School

Enfield Grammar School


Helena Romanes School

St Mark’s West Essex Catholic School


St Joseph’s Catholic Junior School, Birtley

Hammersmith and Fulham

William Morris Sixth Form


Beaumont School

Haileybury Turnford

Laureate Academy

St Cuthbert Mayne Catholic Junior School

St John Catholic Primary School

Woodside Primary School


Rivers Academy West London


Co-op Academy Smithies Moor

Gomersal St Mary’s Church of England Voluntary Controlled Primary School


Lostock Hall Moor Hey School

Penwortham Girls’ High School

Wellfield Academy


University Academy Long Sutton


St Anne’s (Stanley) Junior Mixed and Infant School

Newcastle Upon Tyne

Benton Park Primary School


Sacred Heart Catholic Voluntary Aided Primary School

Sidestrand Hall School

The Hewett Academy, Norwich

Weasenham Church of England Primary Academy

North Tyneside

Wellfield Middle School


Cramlington Learning Village


Broomhill Junior School


Gosford Hill School


Wales High School


Lydiate Primary School

Savio Salesian College


Brunswick Community Primary School


Brindley Heath Junior School Academy


Thorn Grove Primary School


Ormiston Sudbury Academy


St Aidan’s Catholic Academy

St Patrick’s Catholic Primary School, Ryhope

Waltham Forest

Chingford Foundation School


Penketh High School

West Sussex

Holy Trinity CofE Secondary School, Crawley

Steyning Grammar School


Riverside Primary School

The Mosslands School


Tang Hall Primary Academy

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