This appears to have snuck under the radar: Gove is giving £800 million for various academy projects this June. I found out by looking at the British Council for School Environments website
, which is eagerly advertising this news to various architects and designers.
This is big money for those in the "know". The website says:
"There will be 71 schemes and they will be tendered to the 15 contractors on the existing Academies framework. The remainder of the projects will be tendered over the next 18 months.
The schemes will be divided into £250m worth of work (28 schemes) in the North, and £550m (43 schemes) worth in the South. The first two schemes to come to market, worth £25m, will be in Bolton and Brighton.
It is expected that work on the University Technical Colleges and studio schools would also be procured through the framework.
The Government are looking for the procurement process on the schemes to be as fast as possible. This would be in line with recommendations in the Sebastian James review. They are looking to the recent Campsmount Project in Doncaster, which halved the usual procurement process, as the target.
Commenting on the news, Ty Goddard, director of the British Council for School Environments (BCSE) said:
“This is good news for everyone working in the sector. It’s a solid boost for schools and businesses. This also shows Michael Gove is picking up the pace of his academies policy.”
But does beg the question, what about the LA schools who were hoping for all that BSF funding to stop their buildings from crumbling to bits? It appears that LA schools are being starved of cash while a select few are benefiting very considerably. It's shockingly unfair.