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Schools: Ventilation

Question for Department for Education

UIN 35627, tabled on 19 July 2021

To ask the Secretary of State for Education, pursuant to the Answers of 14 July 2021 to Questions 30351 and 30352 on ventilation in schools and colleges, what budget has been made available for enforcement activities in respect of ventilation in each of the last 10 years in (a) schools and (b) colleges; what enforcement action has been taken in respect of ventilation in each of the last 10 years in (a) schools and (b) colleges; and when he last met school or college leaders to discuss ventilation.

Answered on

23 July 2021

The Department does not enforce action on ventilation in schools and colleges, but does provide guidance through ‘BB 101: Guidelines on ventilation, thermal comfort, and indoor air quality in schools’, which can be accessed here: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/building-bulletin-101-ventilation-for-school-buildings. Good estate management for schools provides further guidance on managing school buildings effectively, further information can be found via this link: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/good-estate-management-for-schools.

The Department has provided guidance on COVID-19 control measures, including ventilation, which is informed by the latest scientific evidence in consultation with Public Health England and the Health and Safety Executive.

The guidance for schools can be found at: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/actions-for-schools-during-the-coronavirus-outbreak and the guidance for further education colleges can be found at: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/coronavirus-covid-19-maintaining-further-education-provision.

Department officials and Ministers regularly meet with a wide range of stakeholder organisations to discuss the Government's COVID-19 response, including on the use of public health measures in schools and colleges, such as ventilation.

The Department allocates condition funding each year to schools and those responsible for school buildings to maintain and improve the condition of the school estate, including improving ventilation where that is their priority. This includes funding for 16 to 19 academies and sixth form colleges.

The Department has allocated £11.3 billion in condition funding since 2015, including £1.8 billion in the current financial year. Capital allocations for financial year 2021/22, how funding is allocated, and links to previous years’ allocations are available on GOV.UK.

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