School Budgets 2012-13: Use it or Lose it

After a long, wet winter, spring term might feel like a distant future but March is quickly creeping round the corner, along with the cutoff date for school budgets. It’s that time of year again when schools need to revisit their 2012-13 budgets and use it or lose it.

So where to start? How do you decide the best way to use up this year’s budget and start preparing for next? Don’t let your school’s spare change get handed back in two months time, instead think about how it could help your pupils, your school and your environment.

As the snow starts to melt across your school grounds, is making better use of them something your school has always planned to do? Spring is a time for fresh starts and new ideas and many schools choose to upgrade their space with an outdoor classroom. Getting the children involved is a great way to teach Environmental Citizenship and, by choosing eco-friendly features, it could be an investment with returns for your school’s future.

We know that great projects usually can’t get started without a little helping hand and that’s why we’ve scoured resources to bring together some funding advice.

  • Early Years: The Early Years Capital Grant is a great place to start for funding for any Early Years project. We’ve worked with schools who have been able to use it to create a new outdoor space.
     
  • Primary Schools: The Community Sustainable Energy Programme offers schools money towards their projects that include energy saving technology.
     
  • Secondary Schools: Young Roots is a grant programme designed to help young people between 11 and 25 discover more about their heritage.

General school funding links:

  • Although a more general funding site, Grants4Schools has some detailed information about environmental and outdoor projects.
     
  • Fundraising for Schools can help you with your budgeting from the first application right through to the end.

These are just a few of the places your school can start looking for great funding help. To give you an extra hand along the way, we’ve produced a 2013 Funding Report that shows how schools have raised money for outdoor projects in the past and summarised some of the best funders and sponsors out there.