Pupil Forecasting

Education is inextricably linked to housing building, yet the resources required for the funding of new schools and new classrooms is as limited as it has ever been. Whilst increasingly Local Authorities don’t run or manage schools, they are required to ensure that sufficient places are available for local children, particularly for the most vulnerable.

The Department of Education requires Local Authorities to maintain a robust evidence base and forecasting methodology that establishes the impact development will have on local infrastructure – in particular, pupil yields for new development. Even if the infrastructure payments developers make are held artificially low to make housing projects viable, the true cost of community infrastructure still needs to be known.

Find out more about the implications of the Government’s recent housing white paper and the CIL Review, for infrastructure funding

In our experience, a number of factors can complicate the process:

Cognisant’s pupil forecasting experience on new developments has identified a far greater proportion of families with children younger than would normally be anticipated, particularly in the 0-4 pre-school range, see Figure 1.

Bar chart
Figure 1 – Proportion of Children by Age living in New Dwellings Compared with the Census

Over time, the children identified on new developments will work their way through the local school system, with Pre-school moving into Primary and Primary moving into Secondary, as shown in Figure 2 below.

Line graph
Figure 2 – Pupil Yields from New Dwellings based on Length of Residency

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