Cost of School Buildings – Invitation to participate in the latest National Benchmarking Study – response required

Cost of School Buildings - Invitation to participate in the latest National Benchmarking Study – response required

Published: Tue 27th November 2018

The 2019 national benchmarking study analyses the capital cost of building new school places across the country. Last year 126 Local Authorities supported the study but responses to date this year have been relatively slow. The benchmarking report is now the largest national study that has ever been produced and compares the like for like cost of school buildings delivered by Local Authorities and the DfE. Projects include school extensions, new schools, free schools and the Priority School Building Programme (PSBP).

The support of individual LAs is essential to the value and credibility of the exercise. The benchmarking work has covered every region of England and is now a significant data set with a high level of consistency that forms a credible case for developer negotiations and informs us of the actual costs of school projects including cost per place, gross and net costs. The study is also used as a tool by the DfE to help negotiate future education capital settlements with Treasury.

We are now working towards publishing a new report early in 2019 covering primary, secondary and SEN school costs. As the March 2018 publication had a high number of Local Authorities participating as well as the ESFA (now DfE), we would again welcome your support to include projects in the latest study to ensure a robust cost analysis that reflects costs from every region of England.

Alongside Local Authorities, the study has been welcomed and supported by the Cabinet Office and the Department for Education.  It will be important to continue this trend of publishing both local and central government costs together in a coherent and standardised manner. The March 2018 report and all of the earlier reports feature on the LGA website, where you can download copies:

Should you decide to participate you can be assured that any data supplied will be treated confidentially and you will be welcome to a copy of the report once it has been published.  No authority will be associated to any individual costs, as only average sample costs are published.

Further submission instructions and project criteria for the study can be found on the standard cost form accessed via the link above. Returns have been requested by 30 November but should an extension  be helpful, please contact

I do hope that you will be able to participate with the study and contribute directly to this important publication.

Peter  Colenutt

Vice Chair of EBDOG National Executive –

Published: Tue 27th November 2018