MPs secure £1.15m schools grant to aid Covid-19 recovery

MPs Lucy Frazer Steve Barclay Michelle Donelan

Cambridgeshire MPs Lucy Frazer (left) and Steve Barclay (centre) have welcomed an extra £1.15m of funding for schools in the area as part of the government's Opportunity Area programme. Right is schools minister, Michelle Donelan MP. - Credit: Archant

Schools across Fenland and east Cambridgeshire will share over £1.15million to help them recover from the Covid-19 pandemic.  

The money is on top of awards made earlier to all schools under a national Covid Recovery funding scheme.  

NE Cambs MP Steve Barclay and SE Cambs Lucy Frazer, welcomed the extra funding.  

It follows on from their campaign of recent years to ensure both areas were included in the Department for Education’s Opportunity Area (OA) programme. 

The new funding will also focus on improving exam results as well as helping support pupils at risk of falling out of education.  

Mr Barclay said: “Many teachers, governors and pupils have worked hard to ensure learning continues during the challenges of Covid.   

“This extra funding announcement could not come at a better time in supporting them as we build back better from the pandemic.”  

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One of the schools Mr Barclay visited last week which has benefited from the programme is Townley Primary School in Christchurch, which also received a Primary Science Quality Mark.  

Ms Frazer said: “The scheme is having a positive effect on student attainment and laying the groundwork for improved social mobility.    

“I am proud that the Fenland and East Cambridgeshire Recruitment Incentives Grant has helped recruit more teachers into our schools and improve our mental health support.”  

So far, the programme has helped to recruit 79 teachers into 19 Fenland and east Cambridgeshire schools through funding for training, development and resources.  

Fenland and east Cambridgeshire is one of 12 regions that received additional school funding as part of the scheme, which has invested £90m on aspects such as improving school standards, attendance and tackling barriers to learning outside of school.  

Schools minister Michelle Donelan MP said OAs have been making a real difference in levelling up the outcomes for children and young people. 

The scheme was there to support “some of the most disadvantaged parts of the country, from early years into employment”.  

The minister said: “This funding will enable them to continue this important work. 

“It will help sustain long-term improvements and outcomes, support more children and young people, and level up standards across England.” 

The Fenland and East Cambridgeshire Opportunity Area was launched by the government in January 2017 as one of 12 OAs across England.