Schools: Coronavirus

Department for Education written question – answered on 20th July 2020.

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Photo of Fleur Anderson Fleur Anderson Labour, Putney

To ask the Secretary of State for Education, pursuant to the Answer of 13 July 2020 to Question 70510 on Schools: Coronavirus, if he will make emergency funding available to schools that have been affected financially by the covid-19 outbreak.

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

We are providing additional funding to schools, on top of existing budgets, to cover unavoidable costs incurred between March and July due to the COVID-19 outbreak that cannot be met from their existing resources.

Schools are eligible to claim for: increased premises related costs associated with keeping schools open over the Easter and summer half term holidays; support for free school meals for eligible children who are not in school, where schools are not using the national voucher scheme; and additional cleaning costs required due to confirmed or suspected COVID-19 cases, over and above the cost of existing cleaning arrangements. Schools are able to claim online until 21 July, and a second claims window will run in the autumn.

Where schools have members of staff delivering services funded from self-generated income, we have advised that they should first look to redeploy these staff or use existing budgets to absorb the cost. After having looked at all other options, schools have been able to consider using the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme.

Schools will continue to receive their budgets for the coming year, as usual, regardless of any periods of partial or complete closure. That will ensure that they are able to continue to pay their staff, and meet their other regular financial commitments.

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