Construction Market Report: UK Education Sector


This report presents the construction education sector’s structure and the opportunities.

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The UK construction market for Education represents 11% of total new build construction output and comprises Early Years, Primary, Secondary, Further and Higher Education. There are differences in the way these are structured between England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland. In addition to state funded Education there is also an independent schools sector. Overall the UK has 28,964 schools, 410 further or higher education colleges and 135 universities.

The government has allocated £12.7 billion for Education projects to 2020 and beyond, many of which will be jointly funded. In addition the university sector spends almost £32 billion each year on capital projects with a number of major projects announced for the next 10 years.

After a fall back in activity following cancellation of the Building Schools for the Future programme in 2011, the sector is now starting to recover, with forecasted growth through to 2019.

The objectives of the report are to:

  • Contribute to the marketing strategy of businesses wishing to supply the Education construction sector
  • Provide an impartial overview of Education opportunities for the construction industry
  • Identify key decision makers and influencers in the Education sector, including clients, architects and main contractors

Along with the report we include a listing of architects’ practises identified as designing education projects in 2015.

The report was compiled in January and February 2016.

  • It comprises of 97 pages with 19 charts and tables of data.
  • Contains lists with contact details for leading Clients, Architects and Contractors working on education projects.
  • Details of the structure of the education authorities for England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland are included.
  • Procurement frameworks are detailed.
  • A forecast of education construction output is included.
  • Projects for Phase 1 and 2 of the Priority School Building Programme and the government’s Construction Pipeline for Education.
  • All of the EFA school baseline designs are listed with links to download the documents.
  • Information is provided on adoption of BIM and Sustainability criteria.
  • An Excel spreadsheet is provided containing details for the architects’ practises identified as designing education projects in 2015.

The report is comprised of desk research from many sources, combined with Competitive Advantage’s own primary research, presented in a consolidated and logical format. Where possible, web links have been included to allow the reader to go to original sources or gather further information.


  1. Introduction
  2. Management Summary
  3. Market Overview

3.1 Composition and Size

3.2 Trends

3.3 Forecast

3.3 Routes to Market

Scape Public Sector Framework

Private Finance Initiative – PF2

  1. Market Influences

4.1 Political

Conservative Party Manifesto 2015

Government Policy

Local Government Association

National Association of Head Teachers

4.2 Economic

Government Policy – Autumn 2015 Spending Review

Funding for Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland

Wales – 21st Century Schools building programme

Scotland’s Schools for the Future

Independent Schools Council

Independent Schools Association

Welsh Independent Schools Council

Scottish Council of Independent Schools

Universities UK

4.3 Social


4.4 Technical


Building Bulletin 98 and 99: school project briefing frameworks

School Baseline Designs



4.5 Marketing

Education Sector Publications

Education Sector Exhibitions and Conferences

  1. Key Decision Makers and Influencers

5.1 Clients

Department for Education

Education Funding Agency

Scottish Education

Welsh Education

Northern Ireland Education Authority

Local Education Authorities – England

Local Education Authorities – Northern Ireland

Local Education Authorities – Wales

Local Education Authorities – Scotland

Universities Student Accommodation

Temporary Buildings

5.2 Architects

5.3 Contractors

Appendix 1: Contractors assigned projects PSBP Phase 1

Appendix 2: Projects PSBP Phase 2

Appendix 3: Government construction pipeline for Education

Appendix 4: Scotland’s Schools for the Future programme

Appendix 5: Excel listing of architects designing education projects in 2015

List of Figures

Fig 3.1 Differences between the Education systems of England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland
Fig 3.2 Numbers of Education establishments in England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland
Fig 3.3UK University capital expenditure – Non-residential
Fig 3.4 UK University capital expenditure – Residential
Fig 3.5 Number of students in term time accommodation
Fig 3.6 Forms of term time accommodation 2013/14
Fig 3.7 Education construction output 2015
Fig 3.8 Education construction output 2010 to 2019
Fig 3.9 Composition of Traditional contract
Fig 3.10 Composition of Design & Build contract
Fig 3.11 Composition of PF2 consortium
Table 4.1 Department for Education Funding (£ billion)
Table 4.2 Student numbers (million)
Table 4.3 London: additional Primary School forecast
Table 4.4 National major EAs: additional Primary School forecast
Fig 4.5 Annual change in student population by level of study
Fig 4.6 Architect frequency of using the BREEAM rating for Education projects
Fig 5.1 Ministers and Management of the DfE
Fig 5.2 Organisational Structure of the EFA


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