First £700m wave of PF2 schools unveiled

Aaron Morby 11 years ago

The Education Funding Agency today released the first wave of 46 schools to be rebuilt using private finance under the next steps of the Priority School Building Programme.

It also announced it will extend the current batch of publicly funded schools, with 27 projects worth £300m.

The first schools being  funded with the revamped PF2 model will be released in five batches, with a funding requirement of £700m.

This funding is set to be raised using an innovative new ‘aggregator’ model.

The ‘aggregator’ will be able to access both the bank debt and capital markets in order to secure the best deals for the taxpayer.

The Hertfordshire, Luton and Reading batch will be launched at a bidders day due to be held by the EFA on 28 May 2013.

A notice inviting bids from firms interested in constructing and maintaining the schools will be published in the Official Journal of the European Union in June.

The other batches, to be released to the market over the next 12 months, are the North East; the North West; Yorkshire; and the Midlands.

PF2 schools projects

The performance of the ‘aggregator’ model will be assessed to inform future investment in the education estate which will be identified by the Property Data Survey Programme, due to report in October this year.

This is the first centrally collated information of the condition of all schools since 2005.

Ministers also announced the allocation of a further £300m of capital funding in the current spending review period to enable an early start for 27 further schools in the programme.

These schools will be procured in four batches.

Screen Shot 2013-05-12 at 20.48.43

The remaining schools in the programme are intended to be delivered using public funding, subject to the next spending review settlement.

The timetable for the remaining schools in the programme will be announced after the settlement is made in June.

Peter Lauener, Chief Executive of the EFA, said: “I am delighted we can confirm the schools to be rebuilt through private finance.

“These 5 privately-financed batches, plus the additional 4 capital-funded batches also announced today, will help us overhaul the schools with the greatest need, ensuring young people can learn in buildings that are up to scratch.”

Steve Beechey, Head of Education at Wates, said: “For the 46 schools that will be procured through PF2 and the 27 which will receive the additional £300m of capital funding announced by the EFA today, this release is a very positive development.

“Now we have clarity over the delivery timetable these schools can be fast-tracked through procurement, although the construction industry still needs the EFA to reveal the full details of its aggregator model, including the equity arrangements and remaining contract documents, to allow bidders to prepare their solutions.

“However, it is a matter of concern that future school spending beyond these schools is not guaranteed.

“Many of the remaining 146 schools in the Priority School Building Programme, who had thought they would be procured via PF2, are in dire need of work, so it is very important that their funding streams are confirmed as soon as possible.”

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