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Special Provision Capital Fund

Liverpool  has received notification (March 17)  of  a new 3 year capital allocation for the purpose of “investing in new places and improvements to facilities for pupils with education, health and care (EHC) plans in mainstream and special schools, nurseries, colleges and other provision”.

The allocation will be a total of £1,543,446 and is spread equally over the years 2018-19, 2019-20 and 2020-21 at £514,482 per annum.

Subsequent guidance has been provided and sets out draw down and reporting criteria. It is intended for the children and young people with education, health and care plans for whom the local authority is responsible.

It is entirely legitimate for the local authority to spend some of the capital funding on provision that happens to lie outside the local authority’s boundaries, if the local authority places children and young people there and believes that the capital investment will improve the quality and range of provision available.

Local authorities can invest their share of the special provision capital fund in:

• Creating new (additional) places at good or outstanding provision

• Improving facilities or developing new facilities

 This can be through:

• Expansion(s) to existing provision including at the same site or at a different site.

• Reconfiguring provision to make available the space for the additional places or facilities.

• Re-purposing areas so that they meet the needs of pupils with special educational needs and disabilities.

• Other capital transactions that result in new (additional) places or facilities’ improvements

• Investing in provision that is located in another local authority where this supports providing good outcomes for children in their area.

 Examples include:

• Expand outstanding special provision that helps children attend school in the local area so that children gain independence within their local community.

• Add resourced provision to a successful mainstream school.

• Set up a new learning kitchen to teach pupils the skills they need to be independent in adulthood and skills that can support them in employment.

Local authorities should consider how to invest capital and revenue in a joined-up way to get the most out of each project. Local authorities may also combine their special provision allocation with other capital funding. Groups of local authorities may wish to pool capital resources to develop provision, which can support a wider area. This option was previously discussed with LCR colleagues but there was no appetite at that time.

The funding is for a range of provision types where this benefits children and young people with education, health and care (EHC) plans between 0 and 25. This covers the following provision types:

Mainstream school or college including:

• Mainstream school or academy (including free schools, faith schools and grammar schools)

• Further education (FE) college

• Mainstream sixth form college

• University Technical College (UTC) or studio school

Special unit or resourced provision, including:

• Special unit / resourced provision at mainstream school or academy (including free schools, faith schools and grammar schools)

• Special unit / resourced provision at mainstream sixth-form college

• Special unit / resourced provision at further education (FE) college

• Special unit / resourced provision (other) i.e. at another provision type that caters for children and young people aged between 0-25

Special school or academy including:

• Special school (whether maintained or academy, including special free schools)

• Non-maintained special school (NMSS)

• Independent special school

• Special post-16 institution

• Hospital school

Pupil referral unit and alternative provision academy

Nursery or early years providers including:

• Private, voluntary and independent (PVI) providers

• Nursery school (LA maintained)

• Reception or early years provision within a school or academy

Other provision

• Any other education provision that is attended by pupils who have education, health and care plans and are aged between 0 and 25 and not otherwise covered. Local authorities should provide further details

 Grant draw down

Before receiving the funding, local authorities need to:

 • Consult with parents and carers of children with SEN and disabilities and young people with SEN and disabilities.

• Work with education providers to agree how the capital can best be targeted.

• Fill in the short plan template, confirming that the requirement to consult with parents, carers and young people has been met, and including information about the other groups that they have consulted.

• Publish a plan on their local offer page showing how they plan to invest their funding, before the deadline specified below.

•Where a project will both create additional places and improve facilities for current and future pupils, local authorities should show on the plan how much funding will be spent on each of the two objectives. This may involve estimating how much of the project’s investment would go towards each of these two aims.

  • Local authorities do not need to send the completed form to the Department for Education.
  • Local authorities should not include costings where this would have a negative commercial impact. Where not all costings are included in the first publication of the plan, local authorities should re-publish the plan as soon as it is no longer commercially sensitive to publish this information
  1. Proposed Capital Schemes for 2018/19
  • Princes / Mathew Arnold - Support Relocation and Expansion (SLD)
  • Ernest Cookson PEC - Increase capacity in assessment provision to meet demand.



  1. Timeline


By Wednesday 14 March 2018




Local authorities must publish the short plan on their local offer page


Summer 2018

Local authorities that have published the plan and consulted with parents, carers and young people will receive the first tranche of funding


March 2019

Local authorities should update and republish their plan to show what they have spent on so far


Summer 2019

Local authorities will receive the second tranche of funding


March 2020

Local authorities should update and republish their plan again


Summer 2020

Local authorities will receive the third tranche of funding


March 2021

Local authorities should update and republish their plan a final time, to show how all money was eventually spent