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Strategic Outline Programme 21st Century Schools Submission by October 2010 Version Version 2 Circulated July 2010 Vale of Glamorgan Council Vale of Glamorgan Council

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Strategic Outline Programme

21st Century Schools

Submission by

October 2010


Version 2 Circulated July 2010

Vale of Glamorgan Council

Vale of Glamorgan Council


1. Executive summary

2. Purpose

3. Strategic case

4. Economic case

5. Commercial case

6. Financial case

7. Management case

This document provides a template for Strategic Outline Programme (SOP) submissions for

the 21st Century Schools Programme, and should be completed in full by 29th October 2010.

Notes to help with completion of this template are provided in Italics.

Where appropriate, cross-references are given to the CRITERIA which will be used to

evaluate responses, as set out in Section 4 of the Information document.

Please make your answers clear, concise and relevant. A full page box allows up to

approximately 500 words. If you are copying and pasting text from another document

please ensure the font is Arial point size 11.

Throughout this document the term “school” is used to mean all educational facilities

serving the age group 3-19.

Please contact the 21st Century Schools programme team if clarification or advice is required

in completing this document.

The completed SOP document should be submitted electronically. A dedicated email

address for this purpose will be provided in advance of the submission deadline.

2Vale of Glamorgan Council

1. Executive Summary

Please provide a concise and comprehensive overview of the SOP’s content,

key conclusions and principal recommendations.

3Vale of Glamorgan Council

The Vale's 21st Century Schools Strategic Outline Programme sets the context for future development

of schools in the Vale. The programme has provided an opportunity for the Vale to take an entirely

different approach to school organisation and development to that previously adopted, moving from an

approach based primarily on building condition to one which is more ambitious in its scope.

The provision of a 21st century learning environment with in built flexibility enhanced by ICT which

provides for the full range of learning needs and styles will support the Vale's education priorities of

raising attainment, improving outcomes for vulnerable learners, extending post 16 curriculum

opportunities, extending lifelong learning and engaging parents and carers.

Rather than focusing on individual schools, the programme has been developed around the concept of

meeting wider community needs through the provision of community focussed integrated services where

possible. Whilst there is limited scope to reduce surplus places within the Vale, individual schemes

within the programme are designed to maximise efficiencies through co-location of schools and multi

agency services as well as releasing sites for sale to generate capital to re-invest in the programme.

The provision of new and remodelled buildings together with the rationalisation of buildings will reduce

backlog maintenance costs as well as reducing carbon emissions and on-going running costs.

Following detailed option appraisal, the agreed priority for Band A investment is the Penarth Learning

Community which involves the amalgamation of 3 special schools to form a new regional Special School

and re-provision of the upper and lower St Cyres Comprehensive School on the site currently occupied

by Ashgrove Special School, Erw’r Delyn Special School and St Cyres Comprehensive Upper school in

Penarth. The scheme includes co-location of Education, Health and Social Care teams, provision of

community sport and learning facilities, youth provision, enhanced specialist therapies and improved

residential and respite care facilities.

The Vale has signed up to a collaborative procurement framework agreement involving 10 South Wales

Authorities. As the detail of this framework has still to be finalised it was considered prudent to pursue a

single scheme OJEU notice for Penarth Learning Community (PLC). This does not prejudice any future

collaboration on future projects or on PLC. The new Engineering form of Contract (NEC) which was

used for Cowbridge Comprehensive School will be utilised.

The Vale's funding contribution comprises general capital funding, capital receipts, s106 funding and

prudential borrowing. Whilst there is a desire to bring forward projects currently placed in later

investment bands it is considered imprudent to do so given the Vale's limited funding streams coupled

with the impending reduction in general capital funding. Although the level of funding contribution from

local authorities has yet to be set, a minimum 30% contribution as was required with the last tranche of

transitional funding will place a high degree of risk on delivery of the programme.

The robust programme and project management arrangements established prior to commencement of

the replacement of Cowbridge Comprehensive School will provide a strong foundation going forward.

2. Purpose

This Strategic Outline Programme sets out proposals for investment under the Welsh

Assembly Government’s 21st Century Schools Programme.

The purpose of the document is to seek approval of the strategic context and approach to

delivery of 21st Century education within the Local Authority and to the projects identified

for investment. This will then facilitate strategic and collaborative planning and the setting

of associated budgets, and allow the Council to move forward to identify in more detail and

cost key components of the programme and any enabling projects that may be necessary. It

will also facilitate the speedy production of subsequent business cases for the elements of


4Vale of Glamorgan Council

3. Strategic Case

This section provides the overview of the authority’s strategic approach to the 21st Century

Schools Programme. A successful assessment of this strategy is a necessary precursor to

consideration of investment proposals set out in subsequent sections of this document.

3.1 Organisation overview

Please provide a snapshot of the authority, its geographical area and the population served,

to which the proposed programme applies.


The Vale of Glamorgan is an area of considerable socio-economic and environmental diversity. It boasts

a natural environment of outstanding quality but also has a significant urban population, containing

some of the most affluent and the most deprived locations in Wales The administrative area is 33,097

hectares and extends from Penarth in the east to Ogmore-by-Sea in the West. The M4 motorway forms

the Council’s northern boundary.

The council serves 124, 605 inhabitants. Of the total population of 124,605 (Population Mid Year

Estimates (MYE) 2009) about 14% (18,176) are of statutory school age. In the Vale of Glamorgan,

16.9% of people over the age of three have at least one or more skills in the Welsh language (i.e.

speaking, reading or writing) compared to the Welsh average of 28.4%. Overall, 18.8% of the population

who are of working age are economically inactive which is significantly lower than across Wales. Of

those claiming Job Seekers Allowance, 34.4% are under 25 years of age. This is slightly lower than

34.7% for Wales.

Of the working age population in the Vale of Glamorgan, 9.5% have no qualifications, which is lower

than the Wales average of 14.1% (Nomis1 data 2008).

The percentage of pupils of compulsory school age eligible for free school meals is 14% compared to

19% nationally. The level of eligibility is the sixth lowest in Wales (PLASC 2010) Two areas in the Vale

of Glamorgan are in the 10% most deprived areas within Wales (WIMD3 2008).

As of the 6th September 2010 the Vale of Glamorgan had 188 children being looked after by the

authority. There were 83 children on the Child Protection Register.

In 2001, ethnic minorities accounted for 2.2% of the population which is slightly higher than across

Wales (2001 census data). The Vale of Glamorgan is rapidly becoming a more diverse and multicultural

community in which 39 languages are spoken. The profile of the Local Authority has changed

significantly over the past 10 years and at present 8% of the school population is from a diverse range of

ethnic minority communities. Within the ethnic minority school population 30% of ethnic minority pupils

are in the process of acquiring English as an Additional Language. In addition, out of the number of

pupils acquiring English as an Additional Language, there has also been a significant rise in the number

of pupils who are new to English. Of the 22 Welsh Local Authorities, the Vale of Glamorgan has the

fourth largest number of pupils from ethnic minority backgrounds.

Vale of Glamorgan Council


The population of the Vale of Glamorgan has grown from 119,400 in 1996 to 124,605 in 2010 - an

increase of 4.36% and is set to continue to increase up until 2023.

The Vale of Glamorgan remains one of the best places to live in Wales and is home to some of the

country’s most affluent communities. Most indicators of health, social care and well-being show that the

county performs better than the Welsh average but these figures mask problems in some areas. For

example, parts of Barry have some of the highest levels of deprivation in Wales and people living in the

Vale’s rural areas can have difficulty in accessing services.

The Vale has 22,047 pupils aged 3-19, 12,060 in the primary sector, 9,720 in secondary schools and

267 in special schools. The size of the primary schools varies from 99 pupils at Wick and Marcross CIW

Primary to 612 at Romilly Primary School, and the size of the secondary schools from 618 at St Richard

Gwyn to 1826 at Stanwell (source April 2010 Number on Roll). The primary school population is

projected to increase over the next 15 year period whereas the secondary population is set to decline

over the next six year period but then increase from 2017 onwards.

At any one time there are more than 4000 people pursuing classes at adult education centres and

various outreach centres in the Vale. A wide range of courses is on offer from a variety of partners,

including those from the voluntary sector, but the majority are provided by the Vale of Glamorgan

Council’s Lifelong Learning Service.

Barry College is the main further education provider for the Vale of Glamorgan. The college operates

from five campuses, three in Barry, the International Centre for Aerospace Training at Rhoose and its

construction centre in Cardiff. The majority of courses offered by Barry College are vocational with a

small GCSE and A level provision.

The Vale’s economy is dominated in employment terms by Public Administration, Health and Social

Work and Wholesale and Retail Trades. Employment levels have fallen in recent years, though the

transport and communication and business services sectors have bucked this trend, exhibiting the

fastest employment growth over the last 10 years. In 2008 the economy of the Vale was estimated to be

worth £1.3bn. Unemployment in the Vale rose sharply in 2008/09, suggesting that the world-wide

recession is having a significant impact, greater than that typically seen throughout the UK but of a

similar level to that being experienced within Wales.

Vale of Glamorgan Council

3.2 Existing situation

Please set out the existing situation in broad outline, but with sufficient backgroundinformation to support your proposals, referring to:

- educational outcomes (ESTYN and other measures);

- numbers and types of schools;

- school places (surplus or deficit);

- any location issues (the right schools in the right places);

- condition and suitability (reference should be made to the findings of the recent school estate survey and your asset management plan data); [CRITERIA: 2.1 and 2.2]

- other factors considered relevant.


Educational Outcomes

The overall standards achieved by pupils in schools in the Vale of Glamorgan are good. National

curriculum teacher assessments and external examination results are consistently above the Welsh

average in all cases. At key stages 1, 2 and 3 the percentage of pupils gaining the core subject indicator

has improved at a similar rate to Wales over the last three years. At key stage 4, pupil performance is

high overall and has continued to show improvement over the last three years.

The Welsh Assembly Government sets benchmarks for performance based on entitlement to free

school meals in maintained secondary schools only. From 2007 to 2009, the Vale of Glamorgan has met

or exceeded these benchmarks in all indicators except one. It missed the percentage of pupils gaining

the core subject indicator at key stage 3 in 2008 by one percentage point. At all key stages the gap in

performance between boys and girls is smaller than the Wales average. In the majority of core subject

indicators at key stage 4 boys perform as well as or better than girls.

Particular groups of learners, including vulnerable groups and those with additional learning needs,

generally perform at or above the Wales average at all key stages. Performance in Welsh first language

at key stages 1, 3 and 4 is good and improving, but at key stage 2 it is declining.

Outcomes from school inspections are good overall. However, one school was judged as requiring

significant improvement in March 2008. It was removed from this category after re-inspection in June

2009 (Source: Estyn Inspection Report June 2010).

Numbers and Types of Schools

The Vale of Glamorgan has 42 primary (31 community, 3 VC & 8 VA) 2 infant (1 community & 1VA), 2

junior (1 community &1VA), 8 secondary (5 community, 2 Foundation & 1VA), 3 community nursery and

3 special schools serving the area.

The authority has seen a reduction in the primary school population over past 10 year period between

(period 1999 to 2009) by 1290 (11.4%) whilst secondary numbers have increased by 1170 (11.9%).

Projected numbers indicate that the primary school population will start to increase from 2012 onwards

whereas the secondary population is set to decrease. Births are projected to increase until 2019/20 and

decline thereafter. The number of children living in the Vale is therefore projected to increase between

mid 2011 and mid 2026 This increase will be factored into the authority’s school organisation planning.

Vale of Glamorgan Council


School Places

The current overall surplus capacity in the Vale currently stands at 14.63% in the primary sector and

5.7% in the secondary sector. This is low compared to all Wales data of 20.2% for primary and 15.9%

for secondary. Surplus capacity at primary level is set to remain constant over the next 2 years but will

start to reduce from 2012 to coincide with an expected increase in the population. However the

secondary population surplus capacity is expected to increase to around 12% over the next five years

resulting from a reduction in numbers of primary age pupils moving into the secondary sector.

There are variations of over and under subscription at individual school level with surplus capacity

predominantly located in the Barry and Llantwit Major area at both primary and secondary level. The

councils policy is to retain no more than 10% surplus places overall and review schools in excess of

15% and particularly those schools with 25% or more surplus places. There are currently six primary

schools with in excess of 25% surplus capacity that looks set to increase over the next five years. The

authority has one Welsh medium secondary school with in excess of 25% surplus places but this figure

is set to decrease as the demand for Welsh medium primary places continues and feeds through to

secondary level in future years.

A number of large scale housing developments are proposed for the Vale that will reduce the number of

surplus places and are factored accordingly into school organisation programmes, as follows;

• 2000 residential development at Barry waterfront

• 90 residential development at Pencoedtre, Barry

• 192 residential units at Barry Island Pleasure Park

• 600 residential development at Rhoose

• 360 residential development at Penarth Heights

Location Issues

Penarth is a narrow coastal town with the schools located to the centre and north of the town. Whilst

there are currently sufficient school places there will be a requirement to increase the number of places

in the future in response to housing development. There is limited land to construct new/replacement

schools and extremely limited scope to expand schools located in those areas where demand is likely to

grow. One Victorian school is leased at £75k per annum with a playing field which is separate from the

school buildings. Two local authority nursery schools are linked to three primary schools.


There are a significant number of Victorian Schools in Barry many of which are located in and around

the town centre. These schools are located on constrained sites making it difficult to address suitability

issues. Whilst there are sufficient school places in Barry they are not all located in the right areas. Some

of the schools have high numbers of surplus places which are likely to continue in the future as the

population moves to new housing estates situated in the outer edges of the town and parents choose to

send their children to schools in other catchment areas often outside of the town. The proposed

development of Barry Waterfront will necessitate the provision of at least 210 additional school places

situated on or in close proximity to the waterfront.

Vale of Glamorgan Council


Rural Vale

Schools in Llantwit Major and St Athan generally have high levels of current and projected surplus

places. Work is being carried out to reduce surplus capacity through the re-designation of surplus

demountable buildings where possible. The majority of the Vale’s smaller primary schools are located in

the Rural Vale. Of the 16 primary schools in the Rural Vale, 5 fall within the range 99 – 107 on roll and 3

within the range 155 – 169 on roll. Some of these schools border the neighbouring authorities of

Bridgend and Rhondda Cynon Taff (RCT) with a number of pupils being attracted from these authorities.

The future provision of school places in these areas needs to be reviewed and planned in collaboration

with these authorities. An initial joint planning meeting has taken place with RCT.

Welsh Medium

The percentage of total primary school children receiving their education through the medium of Welsh

between 2001 and 2006 has fluctuated between 10% and 11%. This equates to an average intake of

152 pupils per annum. Between 2007 and 2009, the reception intake to Welsh Medium Primary Schools

has been consistently above 13%, an average intake of 193 pupils. Demand for reception places in

2010 was in excess of available capacity and it is estimated that demand for reception places in 2011

will outstrip supply by approximately 40 places. In order to address the shortage of places, the Council

has published statutory notices to establish Welsh Medium Primary Seed Schools in Llantwit Major and

Barry. A ministerial decision on these proposals is awaited.

Condition and Suitability

Condition surveys and suitability assessments were completed both in house and by external WAG

appointed consultants during 2009/10. There are a number of discrepancies between the two

assessments though generally both agree that the overall condition of the school estate is in reasonably

good with St Cyres Comprehensive, Llantwit Comprehensive and the SEN schools being notable

exceptions. There is greater disagreement regarding the suitability of the school buildings to provide the

needs of the current national curriculum, the in house suitability assessments compared the existing

buildings with the recommendations of Building Bulletin 98 or 99 as this is considered the standard to be

reached by all 21st Century schools. The condition survey and suitability assessment data has been

drawn upon to inform the programme.

Other Factors

Proposals in relation to the St Athan Development and Barry Waterfront have created uncertainty

regarding the planning of school places.

The overall low level of surplus places in the Vale reduces the capacity for further reduction through

school closures or amalgamations.

In order to meet sufficiency and suitability criteria, the Council has made significant capital investments

to support Education provision. this has included the building of a new Welsh Medium Secondary

School without Welsh Assembly Government funding support. As a consequence, the Authority has

exhausted its capital reserves and will be largely dependent on Welsh Assembly Government funding

and capital receipts to fund the essential work detailed in this SOP.

Vale of Glamorgan Council

3.3 Strategy and programme investment aims

The aims of the programme are, in line with the national programme objectives, to deliver:

• Learning environments for children and young people aged from 3 to19 that will enable

the successful implementation of strategies for school improvement and better

educational outcomes;

• Greater economy through better use of resources to improve the efficiency and

cost-effectiveness of the education estate and public service provision; and

• A sustainable education system with all schools meeting a 21st Century Schools Standard,

and reducing the recurrent costs and carbon footprint.

The achievement of these aims will be delivered through the following:

Please provide an overview of the strategy and groups of projects as a series of bullet points,

and say how these contribute to the three main aims. Reference should also be made to

other related investment or change programmes in which the Authority is engaged, or

intends to be.

[CRITERIA: 1.1 to 1.5]


The Vale’s 21st Century Schools Strategy centres on improvement of the learning environment to

support the achievement of key priorities set out in Education 2015 and the Vale's Transformation SOC

such as improving outcomes for vulnerable groups of learners, engaging parents and carers, raising

pupil attainment and extending choice for post 16 learners. The programme seeks to achieve this

through focusing on schools where building and suitability issues are of concern and likely to impact on

the achievement of key education priorities. This is balanced with the need to create sustainable public

services through rationalisation of buildings, sharing of resources, development of energy efficient

buildings with reduced running costs and ensuring that we have the right schools in the right places

whilst maintaining community focus.

Penarth Learning Community

This scheme involves the amalgamation of 3 special schools to form a new Special School and

re-provision of the upper and lower St Cyres Comprehensive School on the site currently occupied by

Ashgrove Special School, Erw’r Delyn Special School and St Cyres Comprehensive Upper school in

Penarth. Significant improvement of building condition and suitability will support the achievement of key

priorities relating to attainment, improving outcomes for vulnerable learners across the 3 - 19 spectrum

as well as extending 14 - 19 curriculum choice and access. The scheme includes co-location of

Education, Health and Social Care teams, provision of community sport and learning facilities, youth

provision, enhanced specialist therapies and improved residential and respite care facilities.

Rationalisation and co-location of buildings and multi agency services will generate efficiencies through

shared support services and improved use of staff resources as well as releasing school sites enabling

capital receipts to be generated for reinvestment in the programme. The Special Educational Needs

School will provide enhanced regional facilities generating efficiency savings across a number of

authorities through minimising the need to make expensive private sector placements. A new building

Vale of Glamorgan Council


will eliminate high backlog maintenance costs and will incorporate the use of renewable technologies

to drive down the carbon footprint.

Llantwit Learning Community

Re-provision of Llantwit comprehensive school (mixture of new and remodelled), a new 420 place

English medium school to replace two existing primary schools and a new 210 place Welsh medium

primary school to provide a permanent replacement for the seed school, on one site (number of primary

school places to be determined following review of places in the Rural Vale and re-assessment following

cancellation of the St Athan Development). The project includes provision of a new library, an area office

for the Police and leisure facilities. Efficiency savings will be realised through co-location of buildings

and services, a reduction in backlog maintenance and energy efficient buildings. The scheme releases a

school site which will be sold to generate a capital receipt to be used for programme investment

purposes. The provision of a learning environment suitable for the 21st century is expected to raise

standards of education across the 3-19 spectrum particularly in relation to one of the primary schools

which is currently the lowest performing primary school in the Vale.

Welsh Medium

New 420 place primary school to replace seed school on the Ysgol Bro Morganwg site and St Barac

Primary School. Feasibility of 3-19 all through provision to be considered. New 210 primary school in

Llanwit Major to replace the seed school (included in the Llantwit project above). Replacement for Ysgol

Iolo Morganwg to address insurmountable suitability issues. Remodelling Key Stage 1 Ysgol Penygarth

in Penarth. This scheme support the Council's priority of expanding the number of Welsh Medium

Primary School places to meet future demand. It enables the co-location of primary and secondary

education promoting the sharing of resources and also releases a school site for sale. Again, the

improvement of building suitability supports raising of standards and enables the engagement of parents

and carers through the provision of enhanced technology. New and remodelled buildings will reduce

backlog maintenance and running costs.

The following schemes have not been fully developed and are subject to further review of school

organisation and wider community needs. Review work will focus on achievement of the programme


Barry Schools Cluster

Review of schools in Barry and immediate surrounding area to ensure the right number of schools in the

right places. Possible provision of new primary school on the Waterfront to meet increased demand in

that area (will be determined by outcome of negotiations). Following review, remodelling work at a

number of schools to address condition and suitability requirements.

Rural Vale Cluster

Review of schools in Rural Vale to ensure right number of schools in right locations. Following review,

remodelling work at a number of schools to address condition and suitability requirements.

Faith Schools

Replacement of St Helen’s VA Roman Catholic Infants and Junior School, remodelling/replacement of

St Richard Gwyn VA Roman Catholic High School and development of Church in Wales secondary

provision have been identified as future requirements by the Diocesan Directors of Education. Options

will be identified through discussion with relevant schools, parishes and between the two churches.

Vale of Glamorgan Council

3.4 Business needs and proposed solutions

Please set out the current and future need for change in relation to the situation

outlined in 3.2 for each of the following:

- School improvement including proposals related to the School Effectiveness Framework

and opportunities where appropriate for joint working at WAG/authority/school level.



The challenge for school improvement is not only to maintain the Vale's high performance, but to

improve it. Schools in the Vale support an increasing number of pupils with English as an Additional

Language (EAL) with 29 different languages being spoken in one of our schools. Mobility of pupils within

and between key stages is also relatively high, approximating to 30% across the Authority. Our schools

effectively support an increasingly rich and diverse pupil population. We aim to ensure that our

transformation proposals and over arching school improvement strategy reflects this regional context,

underpinned by the results of data analysis for individual schools, individual pupils and the provision

they need to secure success. Our key strategic areas for development also provide opportunities for

joint working. Key aspects being; devising and implementing the National Literacy Plan, developing

effective Ethnic Minority Achievement services, Community Focussed Schools and Additional Learning

Needs provision, establishing a Learning and Skills Partnership, developing further collaboration in line

with the Learning and Skills Measure, the on-going 14 -19 agenda and support of the Barry

College/Coleg Glan Hafren merger.

Our vision for learning, Education 2015 and our local and regional context sets the strategic framework

for the National School Effectiveness Framework (SEF) and the supportive National Model for School

Improvement (NMSI). To deliver the standards agenda schools will work with other schools, the local

authority and the Welsh Assembly Government, Professional Learning Communities (PLCs), will be the

vehicle for this and the NMSI will provide the underpinning foci for this work.

Our NMSI Implementation Plan currently sits within the regional Central South Consortium plan, both

complimenting existing plans and enhancing outcomes and wellbeing for learners.

Currently, we have 55 schools engaged in PLCs across the Authority. The focus for this work supports

our over arching strategy for school improvement namely, challenge for more able pupils, the impact of

experiential learning on standards, developing ICT to enhance links between Welsh and English

medium schools, raising standards of reading on transition from Y2 to Y3, improving wellbeing in

secondary age pupils and improving standards of writing in KS 1, 2 and 3 through a joint Community

Focused Schools approach.

We recognise that distributed leadership and succession planning are core features of successful

schools and we aim to develop this through networks of professional practice. We have worked with

Bridgend and Merthyr Tydfil Local Authorities to develop a Leadership Development Programme. The

Programme is facilitated by the lead officer for Central South Consortium which also draws on the

expertise of a core of highly effective Headteachers. The programme aims to be enquiry driven, develop

shared understandings, and be collaborative with partner local authorities whilst being rooted in the local


Our aim overall is to continue to maintain and improve standards and wellbeing, secure success for

every learner in every setting and to enrich learning experiences through engagement with the

community, both locally and globally.

Vale of Glamorgan Council

- 21st Century Schools is more than just a building programme, please demonstrate how

you propose to transform approaches to teaching and learning, including the use of ICT

across ages 3 - 19.



Our vision grants learners the freedom to develop their skills as far and as effectively as they can.

Collaboration and communication tools will encourage open and transparent creativity where success

can be exhibited within the community, giving every pupil an education suited to their needs.

BECTA’s publication, “Transforming education and training through effective use of technology in capital

programmes” gives us confidence that we are working in the right direction. Each topic considered or

recommended by BECTA is reflected in our work. This is part by design, but principally due to our own

understanding of technology and the benefit it brings to our learners.

St Cyres School in Penarth is piloting our Learning Portal project which includes resource sharing,

timetable management, distance learning and the capability for parents to check their child's attendance

and performance. Secure remote access permits the staff to work from home with a direct link to the

schools information management system.

The network is energy efficient, secure and backed-up to remote locations. Automated algorithms

monitor the network providing security and reporting technical difficulties, allowing support staff to

correct a problem prior to users being affected. Its scalability allows us to add features when the users

need it. This includes a current project to centralise information management systems for primary

schools. We are also investigating the automation of school lunch selection and payments and we are

looking into utilising our hardware for provision of “cloud computing” solutions to schools and pupils. We

intend to build further upon the ten years of installing cashless purchasing in relation to school meals to

generate savings in administration and management.

In readiness for the new Penarth Learning Community we are piloting educational use of interactive

platforms such as touch-sensitive table displays and body-motion sensor devices which will allow pupils

of the Special School to interact within a Virtual Learning Environment or with each other, even if they

are in a different school. Research into interactive on-line learning communities which compliment

traditional classroom methods and encourage personalisation of a pupil’s experience is underway.

The infrastructure we are building minimises the requirement of paper, saving on hardware, stationery

and energy costs. Video Conferencing has been installed in Bro Morgannwg School and high definition

Multi-Point Telepresence solutions are being considered to provide education-sharing not only between

schools, but across schools, universities, museums and institutions worldwide. Resultant savings in

travel will minimise energy related emissions. It can also supply zero-call-cost VOIP telephony to users.

The authority will collaborate with other authorities at a regional and national level to maximise the

opportunities to establish pan regional/national ICT systems, infrastructure and learning platforms.

Vale of Glamorgan Council

- School organisation - location, size and types of school; addressing surplus places if

appropriate; consideration of inter-authority issues; organisational change across the

3-19 spectrum; or otherwise improving the efficiency of the school estate. Reference

should also be made here to demand and any proposals for Welsh Medium education,

and to Statutory approvals that may be needed for organisational change.



Cross reference to sections 3.2 and 3.3 for information relating to location, size and types of schools,

school places, inter-authority issues and current demand for Welsh Medium education.

Welsh Medium Education Proposals

To confirm future demand for Welsh Medium education a survey was undertaken during 2009 of parents

with children under three years of age living in the Vale of Glamorgan. The survey revealed that, of

those who responded, 26% are very likely to require a Welsh Medium school place for their children.

This figure is over and above the current intake levels for schools and is in line with current trends that

are being observed by the authority. The survey highlights an unmet or latent demand for Welsh

Medium education due to the existing distribution of Welsh Medium primary schools across the Vale and

the travel distances involved to access these schools. This increasing and latent demand is being

addressed through the Welsh Medium Strategy adopted by Cabinet on 18 November 2009. This

strategy includes new primary schools in Barry and Llantwit Major, redevelopment of primary schools in

Penarth and Cowbridge and closure of a victorian primary school located on a confined site in Barry.

Statutory Approvals will be required for the following:

Penarth Learning Community - specifically for the amalgamation of the three Special Needs Schools.

Llantwit Learning Community - for the establishment of the 420 English Medium School and closure of 2

existing primary schools.

Welsh Medium - establishment of a 420 primary school in Barry and closure of Ysgol St Barac and the

seed school.

Barry Schools - for the establishment of new Waterfront school.

Faith School provision - approval dependent on chosen option.

Whilst collaboration through professional learning communities will be expected to raise standards and

improve outcomes across the service, specific collaborative arrangements will be needed to meet the

following challenges:-

1. Extending curriculum opportunities to vulnerable and disadvantaged learners through integration of

SEN schools within the Penarth Learning Community.

2. Developing vocational learning opportunities at Penarth and Llantwit Major to extend choice for post

16 through joint provision with Barry College/Coleg Glan Hafren.

3. Establishing as appropriate, specialist regional provision for SEN within the Penarth Learning

Community to achieve revenue savings through reduced reliance on out of county provision on

behalf of Local Authorities across South Wales.

Whilst the Vale's comparatively low level of surplus places provides limited scope for rationalisation, a

reduction in the overall cost of the school estate will be sought through co-location of schools and other

facilities where practicable, sharing of resources and reduced running costs as a result of energy

efficient buildings. The feasibility of all through 3-19 provision will also be considered where appropriate.

Vale of Glamorgan Council

- Sustainability and carbon reduction strategies.



The Council’s commitment to a sustainable built environment goes beyond the target of securing a

BREEAM excellent rating. The sustainability and carbon reduction strategy for school buildings seeks to

engage the school and wider community. All briefs seek to consider how a school building can be:

• Low carbon and energy efficient.

• Water efficient (both building and site wide).

• Use appropriate materials and waste management (during construction and upon occupation).

• Flexible – to respond to climate change, educational practice etc.

• Providing a positive contribution to the community and built environment.

• Sustainable in operation.

• Ensuring best value and efficient use of resources is essential. Our new facilities will exceed current

building regulation energy targets by maximising passive design opportunities (benefiting from natural

ventilation and excellent daylight levels) and selecting energy efficient building services. It is important

that energy and water demand is reduced first, followed by the consideration of sustainable and

renewable technologies. The whole life costing of low/zero carbon technologies, which may incur

an increased capital cost, can provide operational savings long-term as well as being valuable

learning resources for staff and pupils. All refurbishment projects must look at maximizing the

opportunities for being low carbon and energy efficient.

• Sustainable communities - School buildings will be at the heart of the community and in order to not

only deliver 21st century education but to also provide a permanent resource for the community it is

vital that they are sustainable both in green terms but also have community commitment to their use.

• Valuing of environment – where applicable projects will enhance the local environment. Restoring and

creating areas which will safeguard bio-diversity. The programme team will work with local wildlife

groups to ensure community involvement in creating these new habitat areas.

• Achieve sustainable accessibility – the Council will be improving and creating new safer routes in

communities which will enable the pupils and staff to walk and cycle in safety. We will be developing

green travel plans for schools which will be monitored against deliverables.

• Promoting sustainable economy – the construction projects will create many opportunities for local

employment and this will be achieved through the procurement process. The programme team has

been working with the Local Service Board and other agencies and this has enabled Penarth Learning

Community to be delivered with multi agency involvement. The NHS staff, Police, Children’s services

and other agencies will be permanently based in the school. The school will continue to be used for

adult education and this curriculum will be enhanced with the new facilities.

• Respecting distinctiveness – drawing on the “feel” of the different schools that are being co-located to

ensure that their individuality and ethos are maintained and enhanced.

• The programme will also support collaborative working between schools and other providers to extend

vocational qualifications.

The Vale's sustainability group assesses all projects using a check list which looks at many different

areas of sustainability including environmental limits, sustainable economy and strong and healthy

society. The councils Carbon Management plan links closely with the sustainability group setting

strategies and targets which all developments must achieve. In order to help reduce carbon emissions

the Council has set up an invest to save fund in partnership with Salix which has funded many school

projects to date such as loft and cavity wall insulation, lighting controls and pool covers.

Vale of Glamorgan Council

- Strategies for co-location and integration through community-focused schools and/or

local or regional regeneration; reference should be made where appropriate to the role

of Local Service Boards in enabling such initiatives.



The strategy for community focused schools development in the Vale embraces the Community

Focussed Schools agenda to extend services for children, young people and the wider community. It

promotes the benefits of working with others and advocates partnership working as a way of maximising

resources, and developing effective schools. There is a focus on working with schools to strengthen the

work of others and to enable multi agency teams to reach those who need services the most. The

strategy acknowledges the importance of working with schools in areas considered disadvantaged, and

as such targets those schools with greatest need. An extensive programme of after school clubs,

holiday provision (Welsh and English Medium) and youth provision is in place as well as school

premises being used for adult and community education and a range of recreational activities. The

Community Focussed Schools agenda is a key strand of the Vale's 21st Century Schools Programme.

The programme prioritises the co-location of community facilities, enhancement of existing services and

the extension of facilities with the aim of establishing sustainable services which meet a range of

community needs.

The Vale of Glamorgan Local Service Board (LSB) has formed an LSB Asset Management Group. The

group’s key role is to support the development of an integrated public sector estates strategy based on a

shared understanding of the current estate issues across the public sector to support improved service

delivery and to identify opportunities for collaboration/coordination. Its specific role is to develop the

relationship between asset use, community strategy and corporate/social drivers.

The aims of the group are:

• To provide a key link between public sector bodies.

• Champion the approach to matching asset use with business need.

• The production of joint statement documents.

• Joint review of capital programmes.

This group has already looked at the collaborative possibilities of the Penarth Learning Community and

Llantwit Learning Community, with each offering opportunities for sharing of accommodation with Health

and the Police, as well as with other council departments such as Children’s Services, Leisure and


The Transforming Post 16 Education and Training Strategic Outline Case previously submitted to the

Assembly Government detailed the significant improvements in curriculum choice and collaborative

working which will be delivered through the Penarth Learning Community and Llantwit Learning

Community projects.

Vale of Glamorgan Council

3.5 Benefits, risks, dependencies and constraints

Please provide a résumé of the main benefits and risks associated with the delivery of the

proposed programme, together with any dependencies (between this programme and other

local or regional strategies) and constraints.


The programme will deliver transformational learning environments which are expected to have a

significant impact on learner attainment, achievement and wellbeing. It will enable:

• The provision of a media rich, vibrant, broad and balanced curriculum which affords every student the

opportunity to choose learning paths that reflect their aspirations and personal interests

• The development of facilities for all learners in the community in partnership with other education

providers to offer a comprehensive range of courses to meet the diverse range of all stakeholders

• Provision of a range of complimentary services thereby removing barriers which impede

learning progress.

• Improved pupil engagement, attendance and attainment through stimulating learning environments

and access to a wider 14-19 curriculum.

• SEN pupils will have wider access to specialist services and facilities and to the mainstream curriculum

resulting in significant improvements in confidence and self esteem for the ALN pupils.

• Promotes sustainable buildings and a sustainable education system.

The programme is essential to the achievement of a number of priorities set out in the Council’s

strategic plans including the Corporate Plan, the Children and Young People's Strategy, Education

2015, Additional Learning Needs Strategy, Vale's Welsh Language Education Scheme and the Vale's

Strategic Outline Plan for Transforming Education and Training Provision. It also supports Local

regeneration and investment programmes such as the Barry Strategic Regeneration Programme and

will be funded in part from planning gain monies from related developments.


• Deterioration of the condition of school buildings not included in the programme or not included in

Band A. This could potentially divert targeted investment away from programme priorities .

• Cuts to local authority capital funding allocations reducing overall amount available to contribute to the


• Planned capital receipts not realised.

• Inability to identify appropriate land for certain projects.

• Possibility that statutory proposals are not approved.

• Failure of Central Government to agree the St Athan Development - this risk has now materialised

resulting in the removal of programme investment through S106 funding and other potential sources of

funding linked to regeneration.

• Inability of the Welsh Assembly Government to support, develop and sustain regional specialist

provision for pupils with ALN.

• Given the size of individual projects there is an inherent control risk which will be mitigated by the

project management arrangements which have been tried and tested on the development of

Cowbridge Comprehensive School.

Vale of Glamorgan Council

4. Economic case

4.1 Critical success factors

Please list the criteria (critical success factors) against which you will assess the successful

delivery of the projects and the evaluation of options [CRITERIA: 2.5]. Examples might


• Projects deliver elements of educational transformation;

• Completed projects have high levels of user satisfaction;

• Young people are involved in design of projects;

• Local contractors and/or suppliers are able to bid;

• Projects could have exemplar/demonstration status;

• Projects introduce significant efficiencies into the system, e.g. reduction of running costs.


Raising Pupil Attainment

• Increased level of pupil attainment.

• Each school improves in line with identified need.

• Improved attendance.

• Learning pathways expanded.

Improved Outcomes for Vulnerable Groups of Learners

• Looked after children and those leaving care achieve well.

• Vulnerable learners feel safe secure and protected from harm (pre and post project questionnaires).

• Improved access to specialist facilities.

• Improved outcomes for vulnerable learners through extended curriculum opportunities.

Improve the Learning Environment

• Centres of Learning promote transformational teaching and learning.

• Learning settings are healthy, safe and suitable for delivering the 21st century curriculum.

• Engagement of staff and learners in building design.

• Integrated public and community services.

Rationalisation of School Estate and Improvement of School Buildings

• Reduced building numbers and costs

• Building condition issues are addressed

• Reduction in surplus places

• Provision of additional places where required

• Efficiency savings generated from shared facilities and sustainable buildings

• Reduced carbon footprint

• Projects delivered on time and within budget

• Demonstration/exemplar status

• Local labour employed

Performance against the critical success factors will be measured as part of post project reviews.

Vale of Glamorgan Council

4.2 Option appraisal

Please list and evaluate the main choices (or options) that have been considered for the

successful delivery of the programme. Evidence should be provided of thorough

consideration of options informing proposed solutions which meet national investment

objectives. A ‘do nothing’ or ‘do minimum’ approach should be identified as a baseline

option for comparison purposes.


Please provide responses in relation to:

- describing the range of possible options for the programme in relation to the key

investment aims (see section 3.3) and critical success factors as stated in 4.1;

- assessing the main advantages and weaknesses of each option;

- outlining the potential projects (or investments) that would correspond with each option;

- assessing in broad terms the cost and affordability of each option;

- applying a weighting and scoring method to determine the preferred option.

The options might include, for example:

Choices regarding the scope of the programme at different stages (e.g. 3-19 scope across the

whole estate, or an area by area approach, or by age group – including cross-phase solutions

such as all-through schools);

Amalgamation, co-location, new-build, refurbishment, repair or closure;

Implementation (short, medium, long-term phasing, grouping of schools in different

combinations, joint planning with neighbouring authorities);

Need for, or availability of, suitable sites to meet the programme

[CRITERIA: 2.4];

Whether any statutory approvals required will be obtained in the timescale.

Whether some options permit innovation and might be put forward as

exemplars/demonstration projects - see Section 3 of the Information Document.




Range of Options Considered

The Vale's School Investment Strategy 2005 focused on addressing the condition and suitability of

Cowbridge, St Cyres and Llantwit Comprehensive schools as well as addressing minimum condition

survey requirements across the primary sector. The new Cowbridge School opened in September 2010

leaving St Cyres and Llantwit to address.

The option of replacing these schools on a like for like basis was considered although this option failed

to meet criteria relating to rationalisation of the school estate, efficiencies generated through co-location

of schools and other services and failed to address the full range of 3 -19 provision in those areas.

Recognising the acute nature of the condition and suitability issues of the schools the programme team

looked at expanding these individual school projects to take into account the needs of other schools in

the relevant areas, wider community and regeneration requirements.

Clearly the close proximity of the upper St Cyres School and two of the three Special Schools provided

an opportunity for rationalisation whilst addressing the learning and living environment of many SEN

pupils as well as providing an opportunity to co-locate other services e.g. Youth Services, the Police,

Education, Health and Social Care staff .

The potential impact of the St Athan Development, the condition of the primary schools in Llantwit,

standards in the relevant schools and opportunities for co-location with other agencies and Council

Services were considered when developing options for Llantwit Major.

A number of options were identified for both areas including the 'do minimum option,' new build and or

re-modelling of schools on an individual basis, differing configurations of co-located schools and

facilities and various phasing of projects.

As well as looking at needs at the area and cross phase levels, the programme has also been

influenced by the growing demand for Welsh Medium Education which has put extreme pressure on

places in the primary sector to the extent that there is not enough capacity to meet current demand. In

November 2009 Members approved a strategy to increase Welsh Medium places in the primary sector.

Statutory proposals to establish two seed schools, one in Barry and the other in Llantwit are currently

with WAG awaiting ministerial approval. The strategy includes permanent replacements for the seed

schools as well as addressing condition and suitability issues at three of the five existing primary

schools. Options were fully explored prior to making recommendations to cabinet.

Diocesan Authorities have been consulted on requirements in the faith sector. The need to amalgamate

St Helen's Infants and Junior Schools has been recognised although a suitable site has yet to be

identified and affordability is questionable. Remodelling/re-build of St Richard Gwyn RC High School

has also been identified as a future requirement as well as development of Church in Wales secondary

provision. Initial discussion on possible options has taken place and this now needs to be extended to

involve the relevant schools, parishes and Diocesan Boards of Education. The development of effective

Church School provision is subject to on-going discussion with the Diocesan Directors of Education and

will also be factored into the Barry schools cluster project and the review of schools in the rural cluster

(refer to page 11.

Vale of Glamorgan Council


Member working groups have been established for each of the school clusters (Penarth, Barry and the

Rural Vale) to review school places and identify projects for inclusion in future revisions of the

programme. The review outcomes will be reported to to the Lifelong Learning Scrutiny Committee

which, will make recommendations to Cabinet. The work of the Member groups will be supported by the

Programme Team. The first member working group meeting was held on 8th November 2010.

Option Appraisal Process

A number of groups have contributed to the identification and weighting of the critical success factors for

the programme including Members, Headteachers, the Learning and Development Directorate

Management Team and the Programme Team.

Options for each project were scored against the weighted critical success factors to arrive at a

weighted score. The highest scoring options for each project were then compared to determine/confirm

the order of priority for inclusion in the programme.

The priority order is also influenced by affordability issues so for instance, the positioning of the Joint

Faith School is determined by relative priorities within Diocesan programmes which extend over a

number of local authorities.

Whilst there is a desire to carry out both Llantwit Learning Community and the Welsh Medium projects

sooner in the programme, the positioning of the projects in separate bands reflects current assumptions

on funding availability.

The option appraisal process was completed by the project team considering a full range of options for

the Penarth Learning Community ranging from addressing condition issues only within the existing

school buildings to the replacement of St Cyres Comprehensive and three SEN schools on a single site

within a single integrated building. The weighted scores ranged from 397 for addressing the condition

issues only to 1541 for the new build option on a single site. The new build option scored highly in all

criteria relating to increasing pupil attainment as the existing severe suitability deficiencies including

limited ability to deliver the national curriculum due to building design and limited specialist areas,

access around the buildings and outdated and inadequate SEN facilities in both the SEN schools and

comprehensive school were all fully addressed by this proposal. Maximum points were also scored for

all criteria relating to improving the learning environment along with ‘reduced site number and

generation of capital receipts’ and ‘efficiency savings generated from shared facilities and sustainable

buildings’ as this option releases two education sites for disposal and achieves savings from the shared

use of central faculties such as catering provision, service plant and support staff areas along with

economies in external areas including access roads and bus areas. This development could also be

considered as an exemplar or demonstration project due to the innovative integration of SEN and

mainstream provision on a scale not seen elsewhere in Wales.

Although there have been other similar projects in Wales, nothing has been undertaken on this scale to

allow for inclusion and integration.

We would also like to build on the work at Cowbridge Comprehensive with regard to best practice and

becoming an exemplar project both in terms of project procurement and delivery and educational


Vale of Glamorgan Council


The Llantwit Learning Community option appraisal considered a similar range of options against the

same weighted criteria and achieved weighted scores of between 397 when considering addressing the

condition issues only to 1444 for an integrated school inclusive of community facilities. Again the

integrated school build option scored very highly under all criteria relating to raising pupil attainment and

improving the learning environment but less highly at improving outcomes for vulnerable groups of

learners as the severe deficiencies within the SEN sector would not be addressed by this project.

Anticipated efficiency savings and generation of capital receipts would also be less in this project than

the PLC consequently warranting a lower score in these criteria, this is because three schools would be

integrated into a single building instead of five at the PLC (three SEN schools, St Cyres lower and upper


Finally the Welsh medium strategy was considered through the option appraisal process. Again a range

of options were considered including addressing the condition issues only which scored 358 through to

the new build replacements for the seed schools and Ysgol Iolo Morganwg, amalgamation of Ysgol Sant

Baruc with the Barry seed school and remodelling of Ysgol Pen y Garth which scored 1340. The issues

facing the welsh medium sector in the Vale predominantly relate to suitability and sufficiency issues

such as confined school sites, inconsistently sized classrooms, poor building layout limiting the

implementation of the curriculum and inadequate dining facilities, etc. which would not be addressed by

the lowest scoring option. The highest scoring option ranked very highly at improving the learning

environment and energy efficiency and carbon reduction measures as all schools within the project

would be rebuilt or substantially remodelled to comply with current design guidance and facilitate the full

implementation of the national curriculum.

Future proposed projects for the Barry and the rural cluster and the joint faith school currently included

within band C and D have not yet been through the consultation process with Members and other

stakeholders, option appraisals of these possible projects have not yet therefore been carried out. The

final prioritisation of these projects will be determined following the option appraisal which will consider

the various options developed through the consultation process.

Vale of Glamorgan Council

4.3 Preferred option

Please describe the preferred option for the successful implementation of the programme.

The choice made must meet the key programme objectives and critical success factors.

Evidence should be provided that all key stakeholders (e.g. Diocesan authorities or colleges)

have been consulted on the preferred option and that where possible consensus has been

reached. [CRITERIA: 2.5]

The response should outline:

- the key investments within the programme- short-term, medium-term and long-term,

identifying in particular those that are seen as priorities for funding within band A of the


- complete your investment profile in the box below;

- whether intended to be separate procurements in their own right, or which could be

collaboratively procured with other authorities;

- key milestones for the projects in the proposed programme over a 10 year period;


Band Brief description of the projectEstimated value £(m)

Band A2012 - 2014

Band B2015 - 2017

Band C2018 - 2020

Band D2021 - 2023

Please note that the figures entered in the table above should be the costs identified in

Section 6.1

Penarth Learning Community (refer to page 10 for description of


Llantwit Major Learning Community (refer to page 11 for

description of project)

Welsh Medium Primary Sector (refer to page 11 for description of


Barry Schools Cluster ( refer to page 11)

Faith School provision (refer to page 11 for description of project)

Rural Vale Cluster (refer to page 11)







Vale of Glamorgan Council


The majority of the investments included in the programme are medium term with the exception of the

Barry and Rural Vale projects where the exact nature of the projects will be refined following further

consultation with stakeholders.

Penarth Learning Community is the only project included in Band A due to the size and cost of the

project and on the advice of Welsh Assembly Government officials.

Discussions between the Vale of Glamorgan and the lead officer from the South East Wales Strategic

Capital framework have taken place, with the Vale expressing a keen interest to become an active

member within the framework. Clearly there may be advantages to be gained from involvement with

other local authorities and it is recognised that a collaborative approach is supported by the Assembly.

The detail of this frame work is still to be finalised along with the criteria for the short listing of

contractors and whilst the current time frame appears to fit with the programme there is still further

work to be done in relation to the detail contained within the framework agreement.

Criteria for the selection of contractors, banding of work schemes along with client specific

requirements are still to be finalised and it is felt that it is prudent to pursue the single scheme OJEU

notice at this stage. This however does not prejudice any future collaboration either on further projects

or the Penarth Learning Community.

The preferred option for Penarth Learning Community has been agreed with stakeholders including the

Vale of Glamorgan's Cabinet and Lifelong Learning Scrutiny Committee, school governors and staff,

parents and pupils and the Vale's 14 -19 partnership.

The key milestones for Penarth Learning Community are as follows:

Statutory proposal - this should be carried out as close to implementation as possible but is dependent

on the necessary funding being in place. It is assumed that this will be in place in readiness to

commence the statutory process in February 2011.

Statutory consultation 31/01/11 - 11/03/11

Publish Statutory notice April 2011

2 month objection period April - June 2011

Design and construction process milestones:

Development to RIBA Stage H 02/07/09 - 12/08/15

Stage D 17/05/10 - 20/05/11

Client Sign Off 20/05/11 - 20/05/11

Contractor appointment 03/05/10 - 17/08/11

Stage E Final Proposals 17/08/11 - 04/11/11

Stage F Production Information 04/11/11 - 23/01/12

Stage G Tender Documents 04/12/11 - 01/02/12

Stage H Tender Action 01/02/12 - 29/02/12

Stage J Mobilisation 29/02/12 - 29/02/12

Stage K Construction to completion 29/02/12 - 12/08/15

Vale of Glamorgan Council


New build 29/02/12 - 01/10/14

Decant 28/08/14 - 03/11/14

Demolition 09/10/14 - 06/03/15

External works to playing fields 25/12/14 - 02/08/15

Completion 12/08/15

Vale of Glamorgan Council

26Vale of Glamorgan Council

5. Commercial Case

5.1 Commercial strategy

Please outline the commercial strategy for the programme. This may differ for individual

investments and should describe how the authority (or collaborating authorities) will

endeavour to ‘leverage’ the best available deal for each investment, or combination of

investments, from the supply-side and market place. Reference should be made to:

- strategy for compliance with competition requirements;

- likely extent of use of private sector contractors/ suppliers, in-house or public-sector

suppliers of services, partner organisations, etc;

- procurement through regional or other frameworks;

- prequalified contractors or suppliers;

- potential for innovative procurement- e.g. offsite construction;

- potential for use of local SMEs, local labour, materials, etc.


“Partnership is at the heart of what we do”

To enable the delivery of its vision, the Council has sought to adopt a more proactive approach to

procurement focusing on some of the key goals as set out by the Office of Government Commerce

(OGC), particularly looking to:

o Deliver value for money to both the Council and WAG.

o Deliver the project on time, to budget and agreed quality.

o Sustainable procurement and operations.

Of particular concern to the Council was the proposed form of procurement. Following discussion both

internally and with the Council's consultants it was agreed to utilise the New Engineering form of

Contract (NEC). This suite of contracts was reviewed by the OGC in 2005 and it was concluded that the

NEC3 suite of contracts was fully compliant with the OGC’s Achieving Excellence in Construction

initiative. The OGC gave its support to the use of the NEC version 3 by public sector procurers.

Central to the Council’s philosophy has been the development of a collaborative approach to the

construction of Cowbridge Comprehensive School, ensuring that there are strong relationships between

the whole delivery team, including the consultants and main contractor.

However, it is strongly felt that by all the team working in a non adversarial manner with the foundation

of a well recognised form of contract the challenges faced have been overcome and the lessons

Vale of Glamorgan Council


shared with others within both the public and private sectors within South Wales.

Ultimately the project is about delivering a high quality, educational facility that will meet the aspirations

of the school as well as providing a building fit for the community to move forward together in the 21st


Discussions between the Vale of Glamorgan and the lead officer from the South East Wales Strategic

Capital (Sewscap)framework have recently taken place, with the Vale expressing a keen interest to

become an active member within the framework. Clearly there may be advantages to be gained from

involvement with other local authorities and it is recognised that a collaborative approach is supported

by the Assembly.

The detail of this frame work is still to be finalised along with the criteria for the short listing of

contractors and whilst the current time frame appears to fit with the programme there is still further work

to be done in relation to the detail contained within the framework agreement.

Criteria for the selection of contractors, banding of work schemes along with client specific

requirements are still to be finalised and it is felt that it is prudent to pursue the single scheme OJEU

notice at this stage. This however does not prejudice any future collaboration either on further projects

or the Penarth Learning Community.

Having adopted the NEC, fundamental to the council’s approach to the construction of new schools is

collaboration. Strong relationships have been built across the whole delivery team, including

consultants and internal partners. Community benefits are core to the objectives of many of our

projects and the actual construction process is monitored on a number of levels to ensure continual

improvement, including the use of pre-agreed KPI’s. One of the KPI’s on the Cowbridge project has

monitored the use of local labour within the project, a figure currently at 91% of the total labour

engaged to date. This equates to orders placed with local south wales subcontractors to the value of

£8.3m out of a total spend of £8.8m, an excellent outcome which has helped the local economy during

difficult times.

A target of at least 15% recycled materials within any new build has also been set for all new projects.

The Cowbridge school has received demonstration status from Constructing Excellence in Wales and it

is also featured in WAG’s Adding Value ll document showcasing examples of good practice in

procurement and delivery.

Sewscap contractor’s framework will provide a framework of excellent contractors who will positively

engage with clients and their consultants to provide construction services that will deliver our future

schools and deliver value for money and other benefits in their construction.

The framework will be used collaboratively by 10 South Wales Authorities. It will provide buildings that

match client requirements for functionality, effectiveness, sustainability, quality, whole life cost and

aesthetic consideration. It will help reduce the cost of procurement and enhance the speed of delivery.

It will help to realise additional benefits in communities including employment supporting local


Early contractor involvement results in a more complete approach to design with the experience of both

the designer and the construction contractor taken into account early in the design process.

Part of collaborative works group which will help facilitate collaborative opportunities on property,

construction and procurement related delivery solutions, promoting standardisation and avoiding

duplication. It will help encourage the application of innovation sustainability, best practice and working

across professional and regional boundaries in order to achieve the best outcomes. The group

comprises of stakeholders representing LA’s across Wales, Constructing Excellence, WLGA, WAG,


Vale of Glamorgan Council

6. Financial case

6.1 Indicative cost

Please indicate the total financial cost (to nearest £m) of the programme, broken down by

the constituent investments and/or procurements which you have set out in Section 4.2

particularly in relation to proposed phasing. Reference should be made to any off-setting

income likely to be available from capital receipts, etc. Costs should indicate capital

investment and procurement costs (fees) separately, and indicate whether VAT is payable.

Quantifiable financial benefits and risks should be included. Particular note should be made

of ongoing revenue savings expected from the project. The use of optimism bias should be


The strategy for life-cycle maintenance of school assets should be described.


It is intended that groups of projects within the investment programme will be treated as a single

procurement rather than procuring separately for individual schools.

Programme Cost £Million

Penarth Learning Community 57.3

Llantwit Learning Communtiy 40

Welsh Medium 14

Barry Cluster 20

Joint Faith School 25

Rural Vale 8

Total Programme Cost 164.3

The attached spreadsheet shows the phasing of the programme over 12 financial years commencing

2012/13 split over the individual investments. The estimated income from sources other than WAG is

shown split over various income streams including capital receipts, prudential borrowing, planning gain,

general capital allocation and income from Diocesan Authorities (excluding the WAG element). The

programme cost is shown at current prices with no allowance included for inflation.

Quantifiable financial benefits include:

• Savings as a result of co-location of schools

• Efficiency savings resulting from shared facilities, services and site management.

• Release of school sites - built into capital receipt estimate.

• Income generation through community facilities.

• Elimination of significant backlog maintenance costs.

• Reduction in surplus places.

• Reduced running costs.

• Reduced maintenance costs.


The scope for prudential borrowing is based on a conservative estimate of revenue savings to be

generated post project implementation. The generation of efficiencies over and above the estimated

amount will be re-invested into the programme subject to the achievement of general fund revenue

account saving targets being met.

Life Cycle costing

The costs relating to the options for each procurement have been identified and split over one off

capital costs such as buildings, refurbishment, equipment, professional fees and recurring costs

including salaries, utility costs, maintenance and repairs etc. One off capital benefits such proceeds

from the sale of land and estimated recurring benefits such as reduced maintenance costs and salary

savings etc. have also been identified. The costs and benefits have been projected over a 25 year

period and a discount factor applied to the future net costs to adjust them to present value. The net

present value of the options has been compared.

Optimism bias has not been utilised as it is considered that risk in relation to the capital element of the

projects has already been allowed for in the estimates through the inclusion of a contingency factor. As

previously indicated the estimates relating to recurring savings are conservative.

Vale of Glamorgan Council


6.2 Funding arrangements

Please indicate how it is intended that these investments will be funded. Likely sources of

non-WAG funding, including prudential borrowing, capital receipts and other potential

sources should be stated.

The funding of investments is shown on the attached spreadsheet (referred to on page 29). Likely

sources of non-WAG income itemised on the spreadsheet include capital receipts, general capital

funding, planning gain (s106), prudential borrowing and a funding contribution from the Catholic and

Church in Wales Diocesan Authorities. It should be noted that the Diocesan contribution of 15% is

entirely speculative at this stage as the Diocesan Authorities are in discussion with the 21st Century

Schools Project Board regarding a sustainable funding basis for Church schools. The income has been

netted off the total cost of the investment programme with the residual net cost falling to be met from

WAG funding. The analysis shows that the programme will require approximately 72% WAG funding

although this includes grant funding for faith schools. Removal of the faith school project and the

associated diocesan contribution results in a WAG contribution of 69%. It should be noted that on-going

maintenance of schools and small scale projects are not included in the programme but will require

investment. It is assumed that WAG will provide grant funding across Wales to enable small scale

projects and essential maintenance to be carried out. The absence of such grant funding will impact on

the amount of investment the Vale is able to contribute to the programme.

The Council's capital funding contribution does not take into account impending cuts to general capital

grant funding from the Welsh Assembly Government. It is likely that there will be a reduction in the level

of Council funding available for the programme in the future although it is not possible to quantify this

with certainty at the present time.

It is assumed that school sites released throughout the programme will be sold to generate capital

receipts. It is Council Policy to transfer education related capital receipts into the School Investment

Reserve for re-investment in the programme.

The estimated capital receipts from the sale of school sites are considered to be conservative however,

where the capital receipt exceeds the original estimate the full amount will be re-invested in the


Figures relating to s106 planning gain are speculative as negotiations are on-going at this stage or

have yet to commence.

Aspects of the programme could qualify for WAG funding sources other than 21st Century Schools

programme funding. Llantwit Learning Community is an example of a scheme which supports economic

regeneration of the area and could be suitable for Strategic Investment Funding (dependent on the

future of this funding stream).

Vale of Glamorgan Council


6.3 Affordability [Criteria: 2.3]

Please confirm the affordability of the priority projects put forward for funding under

band A, indicating any agreements or understandings in place and/or any affordability gaps.

Assumptions regarding the level of WAG funding required should be stated.

The total cost of Penarth Learning Community is £57,329,391. The assumed WAG funding towards this

scheme is £45,329,291 (79%)

The source of the Vale's contribution is detailed below:


Prudential borrowing 1,000,000

Capital receipts 4,500,000

General Capital Funding 6,000,000

S106 funding Penarth Heights 500,000

Total Vale Contribution 12,000,000

The Vale's contribution is in place with the exception of £4,000,000 of the estimated capital receipts

which will be generated following completion of the scheme. This element of the funding will be met

from prudential borrowing pending the sale of two school sites. There is a risk that the estimated

receipts will not be generated due to site specific issues. The revenue costs of both the £1M revenue

prudential borrowing identified above and the £4M pending sale of sites can be met within the Council's

revenue fund over the life span of the investment. The remaining £500,000 estimated capital receipt

relates to Cowbridge Comprehensive School Sixth Form Site. This site has now been released and will

be marketed in the new calendar year.

The scheme will generate revenue savings following completion thereby demonstrating on-going

revenue affordability of the scheme over the life span of the investment.

The Penarth Learning Community was submitted for Tranche 3 transitional funding. The scheme has

been approved in principal subject to approval of a full business case. WAG officials have advised that

this scheme will fall within Band A of the 21st Century Schools Programme.

The Penarth Learning Community is a regional facility which will be utilised by other South Wales

authorities. Currently, Ashgrove and Erw'r Delyn Special Schools provide day, residential and respite

services for a number of out of county pupils with both Cardiff and Newport being significant users.

Whilst payment is received from other authorities to cover revenue costs this does not include a

contribution towards capital costs. The S.E. Wales and Central South Consortia recognise the need for

regional provision and this commitment now needs to be reflected in their respective programmes. In

view of this, WAG has undertaken to broker discussions with other S.E. Wales Authorities to gain

appropriate financial commitment to the Penarth Learning Community thereby reducing the WAG

contribution to 70% of the cost of the scheme.

Vale of Glamorgan Council


7. Management Case [Criteria: 3.1]

7.1 Programme management arrangements

Please outline the programme management arrangements including the resources and

governance arrangements that are considered necessary to deliver this programme over

time (possibly in collaboration with other local authorities).

The Council has established a clear structure for programme management which includes formal and

informal structures. The Council's Schools Investment Strategy has previously been approved by

Cabinet and authority delegated to the Director of Learning and Development for the delivery of the


The Head of Strategic Planning and Performance is responsible for the development of the Strategic

Outline Programme and the supporting investment strategy as well as the coordination of

non-construction elements of the programme including the statutory proposal process. This officer is

also responsible for reporting progress to Cabinet and the Lifelong Learning Scrutiny Committee as well

as seeking Cabinet and full Council approval where required.

A Programme Board has been established and meets monthly to monitor progress against the

programme. These meetings are attended by the Director of Learning and Development, the Director of

Finance, ICT and Property, the Head of Strategic Planning and Performance, Operational Manager

Property and the Project Manager and the Head of Transport and Planning. The Programme Board will

include the Head of Additional Learning Needs for the duration of the Penarth Learning Community

project due to the significant reorganisation of special needs provision involved and given that this is

the only significant project scheduled for Band A of the programme.

The programme board is supported by many other Council officers. In terms of Education, support is

provided primarily by the School Organisation and Access Manager and the Head of School

Improvement. The Property Section which includes quantity surveyors and estates management

provides advice on a range of technical issues. Professional support is provided by the Council's

solicitors and accountants.

A User Group system has been established at an individual project level to monitor project progress.

Typically, the user group includes relevant school representatives, the Project Manager, the design

team, the Operational Manager - Property, the contractor and representatives from the Learning and

Development Directorate. This is used to support the design team which meets monthly or more

frequently as required to develop the design and cost plans. Once the project has progressed to site

Core team meetings are held which include the Project Manager, Quantity Surveyor and contractor.

Refer to attached example of the reporting structure for Penarth Learning Community.

Vale of Glamorgan Council


7.2 Project management

Outline the procurement plans and proposals for project management of

band A projects if successful.

The Vale of Glamorgan Council has a framework of consultants in place for its three priority secondary

schools. The framework was procured to put together a design team which could deliver the individual

requirements for each school whilst also ensuring that all learning and best practice was passed

between the schemes. The selected consultants/design team have successfully delivered Cowbridge

Comprehensive school on time and on budget and have already transferred many lessons learnt to the

Penarth Learning Community.

The current procurement strategy for the development of the Penarth Learning Community is via an

OJEU notice for the appointment of a contractor to develop the design following completion of RIBA

Stage D through to commencement on site and the construction and completion of the building. It is

also the intention that post stage D, the architect will be appointed directly by the successful contractor

who will then develop the design. This method of procurement has been used successfully for the

redevelopment of Cowbridge Comprehensive School and it is therefore intended to utilise a similar

method of procurement in relation to the proposals for the Penarth Learning Community.

It is considered prudent to run the OJEU process in parallel with the ongoing discussions with other

authorities as at present there are no defined programme dates for the start of the collaborative

framework. However, within the tender documentation, reference has been made to the potential

implementation of a South East Wales framework and one of the conditions of the notice is that the

Council reserves the right to transfer the project in to any framework that may come in to existence. A

key aspect of the assessment criteria for the bids is the assessment of quality cost criteria. The issue of

best value has been around for a number of years and the issue of challenging lowest price as

delivering best value was high on the agenda. Clearly it was necessary to look at the whole package

that the contractor was delivering and to this end the Vale adopted an approach for the procurement of

Cowbridge Comprehensive of assessing tenders on a 70% quality/ 30% cost basis. Despite the

economic downturn, it is still the Council’s firmly held belief that the criteria should not change

dramatically, to avoid a return to the practice whereby lowest cost was considered best value.

The Vale operates all its projects under a corporate project management system which has governance

arrangements and an approval process with key milestone sign-offs required for commencement of the

next stage. The project management system also includes reviews by other areas of the authority such

as the Corporate Asset Management Group, the External Funding and Sustainability groups. It ensures

that all projects have a named project manager and project sponsor who must be at Operational

Manager level or above.

The Penarth Learning Community project has a project board as well as a user group and design

meeting schedule which ensures that all key project members can be directly involved in the project.

Davis Langdon have been appointed to lead the design team, consisting of HLM architects and ARUPs.

Their key project management responsibilities include development of the master programme,

monitoring of programme and costs and chairing the relevant groups. The external project manager

from Davis Langdon works very closely with the Vale's project team. This organisation structure has

proven to work effectively on the delivery of Cowbridge Comprehensive school.

Vale of Glamorgan Council


7.3 Roles and responsibilities

Please list the roles and responsibilities of all members of the programme team, any external

advisers and their roles. In accordance with best practice, the programme should have a

named Senior Responsible Owner (SRO), who takes ownership of the programme and is

responsible for its direction.

Bryan Jeffreys – Director of Education and Life Long Learning and Senior Responsible Owner

Responsible for the development and delivery of the Council’s strategic vision for education within the

Vale of Glamorgan.

Sian Davies – Director of Finance ICT and Property Vale of Glamorgan Council

Responsible for the development and delivery of the Council’s financial function including provision of

capital funding.

Paula Ham - Head of Strategic Planning & Performance Directorate of Learning and Development.

Responsible for strategic planning of school places and investment in schools. Directs the School

Organisation and Access team responsible for work associated with statutory proposals. Responsible

for project management of non-building related areas such as overseeing the development of new

staffing structures and managing associated HR issues, governance and site management issues,

potential outsourcing of services etc.

Jane Wade – Operational Manager - Property, Vale of Glamorgan Council

Responsibility for the day to day interface between the project team and the various stake holders

within the Council. Directs the design team in relation to construction solutions. Champions the use of

collaborative procurement strategies and the implementation of best practice in relation to construction

methodologies. Responsible for the Council’s Property and Estates Team as well as commercial

management of the project, control of cash flow and periodical reporting to the Assembly.

Caroline Rees – Head of Additional Learning Needs and Inclusion

Responsible for the effective delivery of services for pupils with additional learning needs (ALN)

including strategic planning of provision for pupils with special educational needs to ensure a continuum

of provision. Leads on collaboration with Health and Social Care and discussions with neighbouring

authorities on future demand for places.

Ron McLean – Senior Project Manager Davis Langdon

During the pre contract phase and before the appointment of a contractor the PM's role is is focused on

effective management of the design team. This includes development of the strategic brief in

association with the client and a project programme. Following on from this the PM leads the

consultations with the end users and identifies the project specific requirements through detailed

consultation with all key stakeholders, enabling the development of the design. Responsible for

preparation of outline costs to provide the client with initial cost estimates. Involved in procurement of

the main contractor. During the construction phase the PM will actively manage the contract. This will

include the management of risk, cost and programme delivery.

Rob Thomas - Head of Planning and Highways

Responsible for advising on planning and highways issues during the design stage and for ensuring

optimal solutions are identified particularly in relation to associated highways and transport issues.

Vale of Glamorgan Council

7.4 Project engagement

Outline the strategy for consulting with, and involvement of, stakeholders, the extent

of consultation and involvement of children and young people, which has either been

undertaken to date or is planned. Please also provide evidence that school governors

generally are in support of programme proposals.


The consultation and involvement strategy to be applied throughout the programme is as adopted for

Penarth Learning Community. The following summarises the various consultation meetings, workshops

and visits that have assisted to the development of the design at this stage.

Governors and School Staff

• Initial consultation with Governors and Headteachers pre project inception and incorporation of

views/ideas into options.

• Involvement of Headteachers and Governors in evaluation of options.

• User Group Meetings monthly to review progress and coordinate the development of the project with

the Client (VOGC), School Head Teachers and the Project Team.

• Series of consultation meetings with School Head Teachers and Faculty Heads to review classroom

requirements, specialist facilities, layouts and adjacencies within the overall building.

• To enable the design team to understand how each of the SEN schools function and the restrictions

of the current facilities, a day was spent observing ‘the life’ of each of the three schools. All

observations, comments and requests from the teaching staff were recorded providing a basis for the

initial design response.

• Organising visits to recently built schools to enable the School Leadership Team to gain an

appreciation for the facilities provided in a modern school, and the types of spaces the Schools’ would

like to see incorporated in the design.

• Series of presentation to Governors and staff.

Pupil Consultation

• Through the School Councils the Project Team has worked with the pupils to share ideas that can be

incorporated into the design.

• Through the Eco-Schools group pupils have presented their initial ideas on how the project team can

make the new school eco-friendly.

• Series of presentation to pupils and parents.

Other Stakeholders

• Engagement of Members through area member working groups and series of presentations.

• Involvement of stakeholders (WAG, DCfW,VOGC Planning,VOGC Highways, Safer Routes in the

Community, SEN Transport) to ensure the design response conforms to the VOG's development

plans and addresses the restraints affecting the surrounding area.

• Involvement of various organisations (Children's Services, Lifelong Learning, Leisure, Touch Trust,

Sports Council for Wales, Youth Services, local sports clubs) to incorporate facilities where possible

into the design that will enhance the delivery of their services or provide a venue that otherwise is not

available in the vicinity.

• Series of public consultation meetings to obtain feedback on the proposals and identify relevant

issues to be addressed.

Vale of Glamorgan Council


7.5 Risk analysis and management

Please set out the proposed method for identifying risks to the implementation of the

programme and the management of these risks over time.

Active management of risk requires the early identification and understanding of project risk, reviewing

the consequences of the risk and developing a strategy for the active management of the risk. It is vital

that the risk is then assigned to the person best able to manage it.

The strategy in place for the development of an effective risk management procedure involves the

identification of risks and consequences if the risks actually occur. A mitigation strategy is then drawn

up and set against each particular risk. These are then scored based on their impact on cost, time,

operational issues along with their impact on reputation and functionality. These figures generate an

overall ranking and the risks with the highest scores are those that are actively managed by the person

best identified to deal with them.

For the Penarth Learning Community an initial risk workshop has already taken place, with attendance

from the design team and the client to identify significant project risks at the earliest stage of the

project. This reflects the Council’s strategy for the instigation of a meaningful risk register to enable

effective risk management through the entire life of the project.

The risk management process will be lead by the Project Manager, although risk workshops will be

facilitated by specialists in the discipline of risk management. As the project progresses through the

various design stages, the required attendance at the workshops will change reflecting the design

development of the scheme. At the outset there will be strategic risks that need to be addressed by

senior management within the Council, covering issues such as school closures, funding, highways and

environmental impact. As the design develops the risks will start to become more specific to the

building and functionality and these risks will be better managed by the design team and the end users

of the building.

It is important that a robust escalation strategy is developed to ensure that where appropriate risks can

be dealt with quickly and effectively at a senior level without significant impact on the design process.

The intention is to eliminate risk but there will be some risks that cannot be eliminated and where this is

the case it will important to accurately assess the value of the particular risk as well as identifying the

person best placed to deal with it.

By the use of an actively managed risk register it is easier to control those issues which may impact on

time, cost or quality. It is also important to understand the ‘appetite’ for risk and ensuring that robust

procedures have been implemented to control risk will provide reassurance throughout the duration of

the project.

Vale of Glamorgan Council


7.6 Programme assurance

Please state what arrangements are being considered or planned for external review of the

programme or projects, including any provision for gateway review.

It is intended that external review of the programme will be conducted at relevant stages. It would be

helpful if a peer review system were to be established across Wales to ensure consistency of

assessment and to minimise the cost of independent review.

The Vale currently engages in peer review with the Design Commission for Wales. The Design

Commission puts together a panel of expert and independent professionals who will give advice and

recommendations for improvement and added value. It is involved at early consultation design stage

and at various other stages of the project.

The Vale will endeavour to get all our major schemes registered with Constructing Excellence Wales as

demonstration projects. Cowbridge Comprehensive was accepted onto the programme after it under

went a peer review which was then endorsed by a Welsh Assembly Government lead panel of industry


Cowbridge Comprehensive School was also identified by other external organisations as a best

practice project, this included:-

Excellence Wales/WLGA - Case study

Adding Value II - WAG -Show casing examples of good practice in procurement and delivery.

The scheme was also showcased at Achieving Best Value Through Collaborative Approach and

Delivery - a conference and workshop focusing on delivery of the schools building programme for


Cowbridge Comprehensive was also used by Value Wales/WAG to illustrate the added benefits of the

"welsh pound" in construction.

We will continue to deliver best practice on our 21st Century schools schemes and hope to gain further

external recognition for them.

Vale of Glamorgan Council


Please name the lead officer for contact on this submission

Date of submission:

Lead officer:


Paula Ham

26 11 2010

Vale of Glamorgan Council