2 The Situation: unprecedented demand Local Authorities have a statutory duty to provide school places for children of school age, but with recent unprecedented demand for primary school places across the UK, some Authorities are finding this obligation difficult to fulfil. The situation is compounded by: Capital constraints; A lack of available sites; Reduced capacity to manage in local authorities; and Uncertainties created by Free Schools, which complicate the pupil place planning process. Experts predict that England's primary school population is set to rise by 18% in the next eight years, with the Department for Education predicting 8% growth by In time, the pressure currently being felt at primary level will create demand for additional secondary school places. Greater London Authority pupil projections indicate that additional capacity will be required at secondary level in some local authorities from as early as 2014/15.
3 The Need: trusted data and planned processes Every Local Authority is different, with their own challenges, but most require similar outcomes and outputs. To achieve their aims, we find that almost all Authorities seek data that they can trust and planned processes that will: Help to cater for the educational needs of all young people within their care; Support their ability to meet statutory obligations in the face of continued rising pupil numbers; Capture issues relating to condition and health and safety; and To do this at reduced levels of capital and operational costs.
4 How to respond? seven solutions EC Harris can offer local authorities a seven step approach to meet their Basic Need challenges. Pupil place planning Efficient, flexible programme management Site search Creating standardised design and procurement solutions EC Harris Proposition School and community organisation options Finding building solutions to suit site needs Strategic approaches to Free Schools and Academies Not all of the steps will be relevant for every authority and so, we can create a bespoke solution.
5 1. Pupil place planning: a fresh approach A range of issues are impacting pupil place planning. These include: Increases in pupil numbers; Reductions in available funding; Pressure on neighbouring borough schools; An increase in the number of Academies and Free Schools; and Changes in demand as a result of economic recession. These factors drive a need for improved planning processes to achieve greater accuracy and trust in the resulting forecasts and ensure that every young person receives the education they are entitled to. EC Harris has developed a model, which delivers accurate forecasting and provides: Easy insertion of data; Individual school projections which then feed into an overall planning area or secondary school summaries (depending on an Authority s requirements); Pupil figures both with and without housing calculations; and The ability to model complex factors. Annual pupil place planning, where a single person or department collates the necessary detail in time for the Pupil Place Plan, is no longer an option. The requirement now is for collective ownership, improved communication, regular reviews and greater certainty that what is being forecast is: tested; suitable for reporting; and appropriate to form the basis of a robust business case to drive development planning (typically 5-10 years). Dynamic modelling tools enable this to happen and should be considered.
6 2. Site and asset search: consider all the options The current situation requires early planning and an increasingly proactive review of the education estate. School Plans: We suggest the development of a 5-10 year school plan, outlining a programme for each school that recognises issues such as condition, health and safety and access. This will ensure that all small works undertaken support the ultimate outcome for the school, reducing wasted cost from unnecessary or untimely works. This pro-active approach to planning supports a consistent programme approach to all construction and development across the estate. New Schools: Site searches tend to focus principally on local authority sites. However, other opportunities such as taking over distressed commercial leases and wider asset use should be considered. An asset wide survey is recommended. Our detailed reports for local authorities typically include location, size, ownership, access and other aspects of suitability such as planning and environmental factors. We align need with availability and identify suitable options, along with potential timescales in relation to availability, culminating in a detailed risk analysis, timetable and plan for all target sites. Heather Lea Long Lane Water s Edge Planning - single storey Noise Expansion Way leave (Diversion) Preferred building position Site Entrance Wet ground Above: The EC Harris site searches investigates planning, tenure, use and cost risk as well as other relevant factors.
7 3. School and community organisation There are also a wide variety of school organisational options to consider. It is important to ensure that any solutions are education led and that the focus is always on providing a high quality learning experience for every young person. For example, one option may be to look at the Key Stage 3 / Key Stage 4 interface, the timing of transition and the school calendar year. Another option might be looking at a staggered day for Key Stage 1 and 2 pupils which is something local authorities are now considering with some interest. Options should be considered with the commissioning body and the schools on a case-by-case basis. Exploring, developing and maximising links with the wider community, retail and business is another strand of this approach. For example, many schools are now turning to business to supply teaching spaces in real-life work situations. The EC Harris team contains a wide range of experience, including former school leaders and educationalists with expertise in personalising learning. We therefore always look to develop a matrix of possible opportunities and alternative solutions to be analysed by the commissioning body.
8 4. Free Schools and Academies: a strategic approach With the seismic shifts taking place in the educational landscape, it is important that local authorities are in a position to make the most of the opportunities available, such as Academies and Free Schools. Where authorities have taken a passive approach, waiting to see if Sponsors or Proposers show an interest, pupil place planning becomes more difficult. We have helped authorities to take a more proactive approach, seeking Sponsors where there is a cultural fit. This may include private providers of Special Educational Needs (SEN) facilities. We have found the best approach is to conduct a thorough review to look at sponsors objectively against set criteria, such as: Geography - in particular Sponsors that are already active in neighbouring areas; Activity levels of Sponsors - those which have new projects opening imminently, and/or have a stated intention to grow; Track record - many Sponsors have a demonstrable track record of working closely with local authorities, either in a formal capacity as co-sponsor, or by having the Local Authority sit on the Board of Governors; Experience - in the stage of education provision required. At EC Harris, we develop a Cost Model per pupil place with each Local Authority to support decision making around delivery options, which includes both capital costs and school operating costs. This allows decisions to be made which reflect the most cost-effective solutions to adding pupil places. Such an approach clearly shows who is putting the money in, and at what point, so that at any time, the Commissioning Body can see how much money the Local Authority is putting in, how much will come through the Free Schools programme, how much is being recycled from efficiency savings and how much is coming from elsewhere, for example through a public / private partnership.
9 5. Building solutions which suit site needs Most authorities which face increases in basic need demand also suffer from a lack of availability of suitable sites. Having found suitable sites, the next challenge is to identify the most appropriate building solutions available. Our approach is to develop a matrix of building solutions which provide the most cost effective response to the sites which are available. This then forms a decision-making document which, in turn, can inform the funding model, and indeed the resulting delivery programme and procurement options. The site options to be included will vary depending on the requirements of the Authority but might include: A 1FE extension to a new school build; The refurbishment of a non-education building; The set-up of a co-located primary and secondary provision; The expansion of an existing school on a separate site; or Bulge classrooms. The building solutions to be included on the matrix will range from bespoke solutions at the top end, to permanent modular, to temporary modular down to basic provision modular. It will also cover Furniture, fixtures and equipment (FF&E) and Information and communications technology (ICT). The matrix should be completed for each site and each option. The Kings Science Academy in Bradford was created by refurbishing an existing industrial warehouse unit.
10 6. Standardised design and procurement solutions Across a basic need programme, efficiencies can be achieved by developing a standardised approach to design and specification, creating cost efficiencies in programme management, design, procurement and construction. It can also help to simplify and smooth the engagement and negotiation process with schools who are receiving expansion projects, and with Academy Sponsors and Free School Proposers. Such development activities might include: Developing a Local Authority School in a Box solution, as well as creating a best value whole new school solution or standardised 1FE expansion. Developing a Standard Technical Specification, which provides a baseline set of best value technical requirements to suit all building solutions. Developing Heads of terms for the Local Authority to rent non-education space to remodel it as a school. This can go as far as a developer model whereby the full property provision (space, fit-out and, if required, facilities management) can be provided on a rented basis. Developing contractor frameworks for traditional build and modular solutions for an authority or for a group of authorities. See the table opposite briefly setting out the pros and cons of the different procurement routes. Modular Buildings which EC Harris has experience in designing and specifying, creating low-cost, flexible structures. We have invested in understanding the supplier market, and also in developing a higher specification solution with the leading UK supplier. This provides a higher quality of finish, robustness, a 60 year design life and reduced energy and life cycle costs. Elthorne Park School 6th Form Block, LB Ealing, constructed using modular technology.
11 7. Efficient, flexible programme management The ideal programme and project management solution to deliver any basic need programme will need to satisfy a variety of criteria: A best fit which introduces external expertise to complement and extend in-house capacity and skills; A flexible approach which can serve traditional and design and build procurement solutions; Retained knowledge and processes through a programme with continuous improvement embedded; and Best value, balancing procurement cost with risk transfer. Our approach is to develop a bespoke solution for each client which achieves the right blend of these criteria. This can range from traditional project management support such as a Project Management Office (PMO) approach through to a partnership approach where risk and reward are shared. Procurement Solution New LA Framework Single Supplier New LA Framework Multiple Supplier Existing Regional Framework New Regional Framework Advantages Tried and tested, quick to operate, can build strong, effective relationships Competition, wider range of technical solutions Ready to Roll, limited cost to operate, can create greater competition Can be bespoke to LA needs and cost of procurement can be shared Disadvantages Time and cost to procure, risk of having one supplier if prices rise Time and cost to procure Not bespoke to LA needs Time to procure, ease of agreement with others on needs We use our extensive knowledge of procurement options to identify the best solution for each client and programme. Existing Framework, i.e. IESE, SCAPE EFA (formerly PfS) Framework Discrete Tender (Sub OJEU 4.4m) Tried and tested, Ready to Roll, can provide a variety of tender types Tried and tested, strong competition, history of delivering at low prices Complete flexibility, can test market prior to setting up framework 1% Fee, SCAPE is single supplier Set up for large projects Higher procurement cost per project
12 Track record: about EC Harris EC Harris is a leading Global Built Asset Consultancy. As part of the ARCADIS Group, we have access to circa 22,000 people worldwide, operating in over 70 countries, 300 offices and generating 2.4 billion in revenue. Working across a wide range of market sectors, we help our clients make the most from the money they spend on built assets. Our ethos is simple; we focus on getting the right results for our clients, our people and the communities in which we work. Our Education team contains a wide range of complementary experience, including former school leaders and educationalists as well as those specialising in all aspects of school buildings. Between them, they have delivered over 2 billion of capital projects for the Department for Education (DfE), the Education Funding Agency (EFA), Local Authorities, Schools, Sponsors, Proposers and various leading Contractors. Our delivery spans Design and Build (D&B), Private Finance Initiatives (PFI) and Building Schools for the Future (BSF) as well as Academy and Free School programmes. A small sample of our current appointments includes: Programme management office partnership (pupil place planning, estate strategy through to building handover) for Bracknell Forest Council Programme management office partnership (estate strategy through to building handover) for London Borough of Ealing Consultant agreement (pupil place planning) for West Berkshire Council.
13 Contacts Marcus Fagent Head of Education m +44 (0) e Melanie Hilton Account Leader m +44 (0) e
16 ECHARRIS.COM/EDUCATION ECHARRIS.COM/BLOGS Follow Join us ECHARRIS 8379EC
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