Primary Education: Children's Play

Department for Education written question – answered on 6th June 2019.

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Photo of Theresa Villiers Theresa Villiers Conservative, Chipping Barnet

To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what sources of funding from the public purse are available for new outdoor play equipment for (a) Foulds Primary School in High Barnet and (b) other primary schools in England.

Photo of Nick Gibb Nick Gibb Minister of State (Education)

The Government has allocated over £7.4 billion in condition funding since 2015 to maintain and improve school buildings and grounds. This funding supports the Department’s priority of ensuring the school estate is safe and supports a high-quality education.This can include works related to outdoor play areas.

The Department provides condition funding through different routes, depending on the type of school. Local authorities and large academy trusts receive an annual formulaic allocation through School Condition Allocations (SCA) and are best placed to prioritise investment based on local needs. For the financial year 2019-20, Barnet has been allocated £2,254,070 in SCA for schools for which they are responsible, including Foulds Primary School. Smaller trusts and sixth form colleges are instead eligible for condition funding through the Condition Improvement Fund.

All schools also receive funding to spend on their own capital priorities through an annual Devolved Formula Capital allocation. In the financial year 2018-19, Foulds Primary School received £20,568, including its allocation from the additional £400 million in capital funding announced at Budget 2018. For 2019-20, the school has been allocated £7,555.

In 2018-19, £100 million of revenue generated from the Soft Drinks Industry Levy was made available for the Healthy Pupils Capital Fund. Barnet received £215,686 to invest in its maintained schools. This one-year fund was intended to improve children’s and young people’s physical and mental health by enhancing access to facilities for physical activity, healthy eating, mental health and medical conditions. The Healthy Pupils Capital Fund could be used to fund outdoor play equipment.

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