The Department for Culture, Media and Sport and the Department for Children, Schools and Families jointly fund the 'Strategic Commissioning' programme. This programme provides funding for national museums to develop free educational and community programmes.
The programme was established in 2003 and exists to support the formal and informal learning of children, young people and adults through the more effective use of museums and galleries. By 2011, this programme will have seen £32 million of investment.
By 2011, £15.3 million of this investment will have gone towards enabling 11 national museums and their regional partners, plus the British Library, to develop free museum-based educational programmes for school- age children and local communities. Over 300,000 school children have benefited from this programme to date.