§ Mr. Forth
Capital resources for local authority maintained schools are distributed on the basis of national priority criteria. These give priority to the second and third-year costs of work approved under earlier allocations, new school places needed in areas of population growth and projects to remove surplus places. The remaining resources are then largely distributed to contribute towards the cost of all other capital work including improvement and replacement projects. Priority in making allocations to grant-maintained schools has been given to projects required on urgent health and safety grounds.
Bids from GM schools to replace Derwent system school buildings will be considered on their merits. For voluntary aided and special agreement schools such 160W replacement projects would be categorised as improvement work and it would be for the local education authority to determine the priority of each bid. Local education authorities are responsible for the state of county and voluntary controlled school buildings, and for deciding expenditure levels and priorities.
§ Mr. Forth
Over the period 1952 to 1984, the Department recorded expenditure on 558 primary and secondary school projects in England and Wales that used the Derwent system. Local authorities could well have used the system for minor projects for which the Department has no records.
The cost of replacing the recorded uses of the system in permanent construction to current standards so as to provide the same educational facilities is estimated to be between £300 million and £450 million at current prices.
These costs take no account of cases where such accommodation has been taken out of use.