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Schools: Construction

Volume 474: debated on Tuesday 1 April 2008

To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families (1) what post-occupancy evaluation has been conducted on new schools built under Building Schools for the Future and the Academies Programmes; (197912)

(2) when the Partnership for Schools' review into the Building Schools for the Future procurement process will be completed and its report published.

Schools in Building Schools for the Future (BSF) are required to complete a post occupancy evaluation as part of the design quality indicator for schools process. This was put in place for local authorities joining the programme as pathfinders and in the subsequent waves. Post occupancy evaluation typically takes place after the building has been through a cycle of one summer and one winter and so the first evaluations are expected to take place towards the end of 2008.

The Commission for Architecture and the Built Environment assessed the design quality of 12 completed academy buildings on behalf of the National Audit Office. The Commission used a tool based on the design quality indicator for schools, which in its full version will be used to measure the quality of all schools in BSF. Future academies, delivered through BSF will be subject to the requirements of that programme.

The independent PwC evaluations of BSF and the academies programme will also look at building quality.

Partnerships for Schools set out the preliminary findings from its Procurement Review in early February 2008. I expect to receive the final report and conclusions shortly.