Dear Department for Education,
Freedom of Information Request: Department for Education
Given that the tax payer funded Primary PE and Sports Premium has for this year been doubled and that this national strategy is into its fifth year of delivery, our Association is keen to obtain details, expected to be kept by the DfE, in relation to those schools who have ‘failed to comply’ with some or all of the conditions publicised regarding statutory use and annual reporting of the funding. As you’ll know, the following published guidance to schools is not new but has been in existence for several years now:
• PE & Sport Premium Conditions of Grant: Academies & Free Schools
‘If an academy or free school fails to comply with the conditions set out in the paragraphs above, including but not limited to a school misusing the premium, the Secretary of State may require the repayment of the whole or any part of the premium paid to the academy or free school or the withholding of subsequent instalments of the premium. This will be notified in writing to the school and any such sum that has been notified shall be recovered against general annual grant (GAG) funding by the ESFA on behalf of the Secretary of State or withheld from subsequent instalments of the premium. Any such recoveries will be undertaken in line with the academy trust’s funding agreement.’
• PE & Sport Premium Conditions of Grant: Local Authorities & Schools
‘If the authority or a school fails to comply with the conditions set out in the paragraphs above, including but not limited to a school misusing the premium, the Secretary of State may require the repayment of the whole or any part of the premium paid to the authority or the withholding of subsequent instalments of the premium. This will be notified in writing to the authority and/or school and any such sum that has been notified shall immediately become payable by the authority to the Secretary of State or be withheld from subsequent instalments.’
By your own publicity, schools are mandatorily required to annually report online their evidence of true spend; impact and accountability therefore confirming its public record status coupled with expected scrutiny by both DfE and Ofsted.
We therefore ask you to provide details of those schools who have failed to comply with set regulations and who have been required to ‘pay back the whole or any part of the Premium.’
We ask that those details are broken down and fed back preferably via excel spreadsheet on a year by year basis starting from 2013-14. The details that we require are:
a) Name of school
c) Total funding returned
d) Misuse discovered e.g. the funding of statutory curricular swimming lessons
e) Whether subsequent instalments of the Premium were then withheld
Dr Lala Manners
Thank you for contacting the Department for Education. We can confirm that
we have received the Freedom of Information request you submitted.
We will respond to you within 20 working days.
Dear Dr Lala Manners,
Thank you for your recent enquiry. A reply will be sent to you as soon as
possible. For information; the departmental standard for correspondence
received is that responses should be sent within 20 working days as you
are requesting information under the Freedom of Information Act 2000. Your
correspondence has been allocated reference number 2018-0014946.
Department for Education
Ministerial and Public Communications Division
Tel: 0370 000 2288
Dear Dr Lala Manners,
Thank you for your request for information, which was received on
You requested for us to provide details of those schools who have failed
to comply with set regulations and who have been required to 'pay back the
whole or any part of the Premium' and to break it down and sent back to
you in the form of an excel spreadsheet on a year by year basis starting
from 2013-14. You asked for:
a) Name of schools.
c) Total funding returned.
d) Misuse discovered e.g. the funding of statutory curricular swimming
e) Wheter subsequent instalments of the Premium were then withheld.
I have dealt with your request under the Freedom of Information Act 2000.
Following a search of the Department’s paper and electronic records, I
have established that the information you requested is not available. The
Department has not requested that any school pay back the whole or any
part of the Premium and misuse of the premium has not be reported.
The government has published clear and concise guidance for the use of the
Primary PE & sport premium and this can be found at:
DfE research into the physical education (PE) and sport premium, its use
and effect in primary schools titled PE and sport premium: an
investigation in primary schools can be found at
. This report shows how the premium has positively supported schools to
develop or add to the PE and sport activities offered and identified the
most common uses for the PE and sport premium were to up-skill and train
existing staff, buy new equipment, provide more extra-curricular
activities and employ new sports coaches.
The purpose of funding is to enable schools to improve their PE and sport
offer and build capacity and capability within the school to ensure that
improvements made now will benefit pupils joining the school in future
years. Ofsted’s survey of 22 schools previously identified as performing
well in PE highlighted that schools may benefit from clearer guidance on
how to best use the funding. This report can be found at
The Department continues to work with sector stakeholders to identify good
practice and support schools to make the best use of the premium for their
If you have any queries about this letter, please contact me. Please
remember to quote the reference number above in any future communications.
If you are unhappy with the way your request has been handled, you should
make a complaint to the Department by writing to me within two calendar
months of the date of this letter. Your complaint will be considered by an
independent review panel, who review panel, who were not involved in the
original consideration of your request.
If you are not content with the outcome of your complaint to the
Department, you may then contact the Information Commissioner’s Office.