Department for Education written question – answered on 27th April 2016.

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Photo of Rebecca Long-Bailey Rebecca Long-Bailey Shadow Minister (Treasury), Member, Labour Party National Executive Committee

To ask the Secretary of State for Education, whether a standard precedent lease will be issued to all schools planned to be converted to an academy under her Department's recent proposals; what the proposed standard length is of such leases; whether a market rent will be charged; whether the tenant will be responsible for (a) internal and (b) structural maintenance; whether formal consent will be required from her Department before any underlettings or assignments; and whether the local authority will be (i) noted on the lease and (ii) holding an interest right on the property.

Photo of Edward Timpson Edward Timpson Minister of State (Education)

Under the proposals outlined in our White Paper, Education Excellence Everywhere, it is our intention that academies would occupy land transferred to the Secretary of State under the terms of a standard lease. We are currently working to improve and simplify our current model lease.

The Secretary of State has a clear policy position that publicly funded education land should transfer at no cost to the public, so our intention is to replicate the existing arrangement of 125 year peppercorn leases. A tenant would in the vast majority of cases be responsible for all maintenance and repair of a site, as is the case with our current lease.

Academies already require the consent of the Secretary of State to dispose of or change the use of any publicly funded land and this is going to remain the case. We are still working with local authorities on how best to implement these measures, including discussions on how we best consider and recognise local needs and interests.

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