Selected firms will be used for a new pipeline of both primary and secondary schools built to standardised designs.
The education department’s programme will deliver around 30 schools a year with an estimated pipeline of up to £3bn over the next four years.
Five firms will be selected for each of the two lots. One panel will deliver a £2bn programme of offsite built secondary schools and blocks with floor area above 6,000 sq m.
The other smaller scale project lot will deliver a £1bn programme of offsite built primary school schemes and secondary blocks of 750 to 6,000 sq m.
The DfE has drawn up design guides to illustrate how schools might be designed for efficient delivery using modern methods of construction and offsite construction.
Whitehall procurement chiefs expect all projects to be built below existing budgeted costs to save money.
The new DfE Offsite Schools Framework will replace the DfE’s existing suite of three offsite frameworks while also developing and increasing the capacity of the offsite/MMC market to support the progression to Design For Manufacture and Assembly.
It looks set to overlap with the Crown Commercial Service modular framework which named a dozen firms earlier this year to deliver school projects.
Contractors will be expected to meet social and/or environmental policy objectives relating to recruitment, training and supply-chain initiatives, such as apprenticeships and T-Levels.