On The Horizon

Posted  22nd November 2016

With the first named storm of the year having rolled across the horizon, in this week’s blog we look at a number of issues set to impact on schools.

Future School Funding

The National Union of Teachers (NUT) has produced data to estimate the levels of cuts schools across England and Wales can expect over the coming years. Schools and academies may find this useful in planning budgets over the next 3 – 5 years. School Business Services is not endorsing the data provided – and schools should use their own judgement about future funding for their establishment. The NUT used 2015/16 funding as its baseline. They calculated the impact of the cash freeze on per pupil income, the proposed cut to the Education Services Grant and the proposed introduction of a National Funding Formula. They included a Minimum Funding Guarantee (MFG) as this has been in place since the government started moving towards a National Funding Formula in 2013/14. See - www.schoolcuts.org.uk

Condition Improvement Fund 2017 to 2018

If you’re intending to apply to the Condition Improvement Fund for the first time, please ensure you’ve registered to use the portal by 5pm 30 November 2016. The deadline for all applicants to submit an application is 12pm (noon) 9 December 2016. See our earlier blog for more information on this fund.

Energy Efficiency Fund

The EFA has launched, in partnership with Salix Finance, a new energy efficiency loan fund for sixth form colleges and academies. The Salix Energy Efficiency Fund (SEEF) is available to sixth form colleges applying for loans to carry out capital works that improve energy efficiency.

Regional Academy Growth Fund

The EFA has recently announced the regional academy growth fund to support successful trusts to grow and to improve standards in underperforming schools.

There are three categories of eligibility:

  • Sponsor capacity
  • Multi-Academy Trust growth
  • New hubs
Regional Schools Commissioners (RSCs) will prioritise applications that meet the specific needs in their region and of opportunity areas where applicable. Click here for more information, and how to contact your local RSC for more information.

Schools’ Safeguarding Responsibilities

The use of technology is now a significant component of many safeguarding issues, including radicalisation, child exploitation and sexual predication. As of 5th September, online monitoring has become a mandatory legislative requirement as part of new updates to Keeping Children Safe in Education (KCSiE). Guidance calls for all schools to employ effective online safeguarding mechanisms to empower children and protect them from online dangers. Compliance will now be inspected as part of Ofsted’s Common Inspection Framework. Please see our ICT Blog about support systems for schools.