Trust Capacity Fund 20-21

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Trust Capacity Fund 20-21

TCaF 2020-21 will maintain the same broad focus to provide additional funding to support the growth and development of existing academy trusts, but will also support outstanding or good Local Authority maintained rural hamlet and rural village schools to collaborate and create new, strong multi-academy trusts (MATs) in areas which lack existing capacity. The fund will use a similar assessment model to the current fund, with a first stage checking eligibility, followed by a more formal assessment of applications by RSCs.

Applications for the fund aren’t scheduled to open until April 2020, but we wanted to provide information on the core principles of the fund at this stage, in order to allow trusts to consider and prepare potential bids. Announcing at this stage also allows for projects approved by RSCs at February and March HTBs to be eligible for TCaF support.

The next iteration of TCaF will award up to £17 million of funding across five strands, aiming to:

  • A1: Support strong trusts to grow and innovate in areas of long-standing need
  • A2: Encourage strong trusts to grow by converting and improving weaker maintained schools or adding vulnerable academies to their trust and improving them
  • B: Accelerate the development of mid-sized trusts with the potential to be strong
  • C: Create new strong trusts either by single academy trusts joining larger trusts or by supporting the growth of existing trusts via mergers or priority projects identified by Regional Schools Commissioners (RSCs).
  • D: Support outstanding or good Local Authority maintained rural schools to collaborate and create new, strong multi-academy trusts (MATs).

We intend to publish full details of the fund in early March 2020, including an application form and guidance document explaining what TCaF is, who is eligible to apply for funding, and the criteria against which applications will be assessed.  We will also publish an eligibility checker to allow prospective applicants to check their eligibility in advance.

The fund will run for the full 2020-21 financial year. Unlike its predecessor, TCaF 2020-21 will be split across two application windows within the 2020-21 financial year, with the first application window to open on April 6 2020, until July 2020. Our second application window will run from September to December, coinciding with the Autumn term.