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We are Engage• 3 Min read

16th December 2020

Covid-19 Workforce Fund For Schools

A new fund for schools has been announced this week by the UK Government. The fund, titled ‘Covid 19 Workforce Fund’ is designed to help schools struggling under the weight of increased running costs and unmanageable staff absence. The fund will target schools that have experienced especially high rates of absence and additional funding pressures due to COVID-19. The support will help to meet the additional costs associated with the increased use of supply staff or increasing the hours of part-time staff. 

Are All Schools Eligible For The Fund?

All schools and educational provisions are eligible for the fund. Schools will need to ensure they have exhausted all other options available to them to meet increased staffing costs. Hiring trainees through a teacher training programme, ensuring teaching assistants or volunteers are being utilised in the most effective ways are some ways to make the most of your workforce and the other funding and schemes available before applying for the Workforce Fund.

Schools must have been open in full for the days that are being claimed for. The funds must be deemed necessary to keep the school open due to significant pressure on staff numbers caused by COVID-related absence. The government has set out a threshold for eligibility based on the percentage of staff that are absent over a specific period of time:

  • A total teacher and leader absence rate at or above 20% on a given day
  • A lower total teacher and leader absence rate of 10% or above but have been experiencing this for 15 or more consecutive school days.

In total there are three sets of conditions that schools will need to meet in order to receive support. Read the full criteria on the UK Gov website here.

What Do Schools Need To Do To Access The Workforce Fund?

Schools will need to cover additional costs from their budget as they incur. Details on how to claim from the Covid-19 Workforce Fund will be published in early 2021 with schools able to make their claims by Spring 2021. Find out more about claiming from the Workforce Fund here.

How Can Engage Support Your School?

Working with an agency on the CCS framework will help your school to source supply staff at fair rates. The Department For Education recommends that schools utilise the framework to hire compliant and fairly paid staff to cover any absence caused by COVID-19. We are helping more schools to block-book supply teachers that they know fit their needs and culture. Ringfencing great staff in this way means schools can ensure consistency in the staffroom and continuity in pupils education.  Book a virtual meeting with one of our expert team to discuss your school’s needs and how we can help you to maximise available funding to reduce the impact of COVID related absence in your school.

Book A Virtual Meeting

Only 17% of education recruitment companies in the UK are listed as a preferred supplier on the CCS framework. Book a virtual meeting to find out how working with an agency like Engage can benefit your school.

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