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The Somerset Guardian, 18th May 2022

Last week, the Education Secretary, Nadhim Zahawi, wrote to all Members of Parliament (MPs) about the Department for Education’s Condition Improvement Fund (CIF) for the 2022-3 round. I am, delighted to announce that from the list of projects published Chew Stoke Church School will be included. This is a particular achievement as the award process is so rigorous.
The assessment process has led to the Secretary of State announcing £498 million for 1,405 projects at 1,129 academies, sixth-form colleges and voluntary aided schools, which is all the more reason to congratulate Chew Stoke Church School on the comprehensive application that it submitted against a great deal of competition.

Since 2012, Chew Stoke Church School has been an academy so all the money that it receives now comes from the Government. The school is able to manage that funding to ensure that the best education is offered to pupils and this announcement will, undoubtedly, come as a real boon.

The core priority of CIF is keeping eligible academy, sixth-form college and voluntary aided school buildings safe and in good working order. Most CIF funding aims to support schools in addressing issues with significant consequences that revenue or Devolved Formula Capital funding cannot meet. This includes addressing issues such as poor building condition, building compliance, energy efficiency and health and safety.

CIF also supports a small proportion of expansion projects for Ofsted rated good or outstanding academies, sixth-form colleges and voluntary aided schools that need to expand their existing facilities and/or floor space to either increase the number of admissions in the main year of entry or address overcrowding.

As in previous rounds, the fund was heavily oversubscribed so only those projects that showed a high project need have been awarded money, something that Chew Stoke School was able to demonstrate so successfully.

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