Lancashire’s schools to get slice of multi-million pound Government handout

CASH BOOST: Penwortham Priory Academy headteacher Matt Eastham, which is one of the schools benefiting from the Governments  new fund for academy repairs
CASH BOOST: Penwortham Priory Academy headteacher Matt Eastham, which is one of the schools benefiting from the Governments new fund for academy repairs
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Lancashire’s academies are to share in a multi-million pound cash booty from the Government.

The schools, which are funded directly by the Department for Education, are set to received grant aid to pay for vital building works.

Academies in the North West will receive a total of £44.1m towards building improvements and school expansion projects, allowing them to upgrade their facilities and create extra places where needed.

The funding comes from the Government’s Condition Improvement Fund for 2016 – 17.

Among those set to benefit is Priory Academy in Penwortham which will continue its refurbishment of the Crow Hills Road site with extra funding to pay for the replacement of roofing and old windows.

Funding for flat roof repairs at Lostock Hall Academy and essential repairs to the science block will be provided from the same kitty.

Work including the refurbishment of cladding at Albany Academy in Chorley, small electrical power works at Bishop Rawstorne in Croston and damp proofing at Clitheroe Royal Grammar School will also be funded.

Lancashire only has a smattering of academies, with the majority of the 600-plus schools under the control of Lancashire County Council.

The Government’s new Education White Paper sets out radical proposals to transform all schools into academies and has already sparked widespread protests.

Lancashire’s leading teaching unions, as well as business and industry, have condemned the move.

Christine Blower, General Secretary of the National Union of Teachers. told the annual conference this week: “Over 80 per cent of local authority schools are rated good or outstanding by Ofsted, so why force them to change? Lots of evidence suggests the academy programme isn’t working.”