Badly-timed deal misses target
Because the consultation over the Pounds 83m was so short and cut across the summer holidays, education authorities were unable to consult schools. Bids were therefore based on the authority plans for minor capital works already in hand for when funds became available.
My school finished up with about Pounds 15,000 of commitment for replacement windows and new playground asphalt.
While this will no doubt "smarten up" the school, neither "improvement" is vital and neither would have featured in a wish list from the governors and staff. Our priority is for extra space.
If the driving imperative of the funds is "to achieve the greatest possible impact on educational standards" (Department for Education and Employment letter of November 7, New Deal for Schools 1998-2001) then the initiative is wide of the mark.
Headteacher St Bartholomew's CE School The Rosary Wootton Bassett Wiltshire