School access initiative programme
We provide Schools Access Initiative funding to improve access to mainstream schools for pupils with disabilities. All Central Bedfordshire schools, except voluntary aided schools and academies, can apply for the grant funding.
Schools can apply for capital funding for building works to adapt and improve the school building, or buy special equipment to make the school more accessible to a child with disabilities. Examples of projects funded include: ramps, disabled toilets, wet rooms, electronic doors, acoustic adaptations and soundfield systems. Examples of equipment funded include: special chairs, height adjustable desks, changing tables and hoists.
Funding is allocated, based on the needs of a specific child, to schools that currently have, or are due to admit, one or more disabled pupils on roll.
Applications are evaluated against the priority of funding identified in our Accessibility Strategy (PDF 219KB) which, in summary, sets priority as follows:
- improvements to meet the needs of a child already in school, or due to transfer to a school in the following year
- improvements where adaptations will be required in future years
- other improvements to allow access as set out in each School Accessibility Plan
There are two application rounds involving a panel of:
- officers from our Special Education Needs and Disability (SEND) service
- officers from our School Organisation team
- head teachers from The Chiltern School and Studham Church of England Voluntary Controlled Lower School
- Designated Clinical Officer (SEND)
The panel meets in April and October to assess applications and set the programme.