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Grants and External Funding

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Open 4 Business Portal

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To support our businesses during the current COVID-19 crisis, and into the recovery phase, Carlisle City Council is providing free access to Open 4 Business. Open4Business is designed to support businesses locate relevant up to date funding opportunities.

The portal is updated regularly with new local, regional and national funding announcements and can be easily searched by businesses on the basis of their industry, region and business size. The portal then provides information on how to apply for funding and contact funders directly. To search for grants for your business you will first need to register on the Open4Business website

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Grants and Funding News
02Jul

Alternative Provision Funding for Year 11 Transition

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The Department for Education (DfE) is providing one-off funding to fund additional transition support provided by Alternative Provision (AP) settings for year 11 pupils from now to the end of the 2020 autumn term.

The AP cohort, a significant proportion of whom are in year 11, are already vulnerable and at greater risk of becoming not in education, employment or training (NEET) than their peers. These risks have increased since schools closed for most pupils and without substantial transition support. Bespoke, needs-based interventions are needed to support these year 11 pupils transition to post-16 provision successfully.

It is up to post-16 providers how they use this funding to support disadvantaged students, and to help retain students.

The DfE encourages APs to engage with the further education sector to help ensure ex-AP pupils sustain their post-16 destinations and avoid becoming NEET. DfE also strongly encourage AP settings to work with commissioners, whether local authorities or schools, and other local organisations including the voluntary and community sector, to put in place effective intervention packages. Interventions should draw on evidence-based practice wherever possible and be based on pupils’ individual needs, matched with the best locally available provision.

Funding will only be available to the following settings with a year 11 AP cohort (sole or dual-registered):

  • Pupil referral units (PRUs)

  • Alternative provision academies and free schools

  • Further education colleges offering alternative provision (these providers will need to pre-apply to access this funding)

  • Registered independent schools offering alternative provision (these providers will need to pre-apply to access this funding)

  • Hospital schools, including those that are PRUs, AP or special academies, foundation or community special schools, and those registered as independent schools.

This funding is only for existing year 11s in an AP setting as of 4 June.

The DfE will provide AP settings with up to £750 for each year 11 pupil on their school or college roll, to support these young people to transition into sustained post-16 destinations and to avoid becoming NEET.

AP's can use this one-off funding from now until the end of the autumn depending on individuals’ needs.

Funding will be allocated to cover actual costs of activities undertaken up to these per-year-11 student limits:

  • Sole-registered: £750

  • Dual-registered (either main or subsidiary): £375

Applicants can pool funding with other APs to create shared activities. Each school will need to claim for funding separately and each individual claim must not exceed the funding limits determined by the cohort.

Schools and colleges will need to submit a claim form by the end of December 2020.

Independent schools or FE colleges must pre-apply to be considered for funding. These applicants must submit an expression of interest (EOI) and a commissioner letter by 20 July 2020.

Eligible Expenditure

The DfE expect school and college leaders to identify the most effective and best value solution(s) available locally to support their year 11 cohort into post-16 settings.

This could include:

  • Backfilling a staff member as a ‘transition specialist’ to organise activities and act as a mentor/advocate for year 11 pupils over the summer and/or during the autumn term

  • Extending the contract of existing ‘transition coaches’ or appointing new ones

  • Engaging third sector organisations to provide engagement activities and/or expand existing transition programmes

  • Providing some level of on-site support for the most at-risk pupils during the autumn term and preparing them for January entry into further education.

Schools and colleges can fund activities tailored to an individual pupil or can pull together the funding into a package that supports wider groups of year 11s.

AP's planning an intervention that is very different from those in the guidance can email [email protected] to discuss eligibility.

How To Apply

Schools and colleges will need to submit a claim form (available on the DfE website) by the end of December 2020.

FE colleges and independent schools

Independent schools or FE colleges, to assess eligibility for the funding, will need to raise an expression of interest (EOI).

Email [email protected] with:

  • eligible cohort details

  • their registration status

They will also need to send the DfE letters from the commissioner of each AP place confirming:

  • number of pupils

  • their registration status

  • that they’re attending due to expulsion, health needs or new arrival - or they’ve been directed off-site by a school to improve their behaviour

EOIs and commissioner letters should be sent to [email protected] by 20 July 2020.

Payment Procedure

Payments will be made to reimburse providers for the per-pupil costs they apply for up to the limits, in January/February 2021.

Payment will be provided for any eligible intervention(s) and payment will not depend on the outcomes of the intervention(s).


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