Condition Improvement Fund

Information for academies and sixth-form colleges about the Condition Improvement Fund (CIF).

CIF is an annual bidding round to which some academies and sixth-form colleges can apply for capital funding. The core priority for CIF is to address significant condition need.Keeping academy and sixth-form college buildings safe and in good working order. This includes funding projects to address health and safety issues, building compliance and poor building condition.

CIF also supports a small proportion of expansion projects. These are for Ofsted-rated good or outstanding academies and sixth-form colleges that need to expand their existing facilities and/or floor space.

Fully and partially selective schools, that select on the basis of general academic ability, will not be eligible to apply to CIF for added places expansion projects, but they can apply for condition projects or to address overcrowding. We will confirm arrangements for these schools shortly.

CIF applications for 2018 to 2019

The detailed guide below contains information for schools and sixth-form colleges about CIF and how to apply to the 2018 to 2019 bidding round for capital funding.

Who can apply to CIF

Single academy trusts, small multi-academy trusts (MATs) and sixth-form colleges can apply for CIF. To be eligible to apply, you must:

  • be an open academy or sixth-form college as at 1 September 2017

  • be a school with a signed academy order as at 1 September 2017 (if successful, you must have converted to academy status and have a funding agreement in place by 1 April 2018 to receive funding)

MATs with at least 5 academies and more than 3,000 pupils do not need to apply. They will receive a formulaic allocation to deploy across their estate for 2018 to 2019.

Healthy Pupils Capital Fund (HPCF)

£100m of revenue generated from the Soft Drinks Industry Levy will be used for the Healthy Pupils Capital Fund (HPCF). This fund is intended to improve children’s and young people’s physical and mental health by enhancing access to facilities for physical activity, healthy eating, mental health and wellbeing and medical conditions, such as kitchens, dining facilities, changing rooms, playgrounds and sports facilities.

The HPCF will operate for one CIF bidding round only, 2018 to 2019. Responsible bodies that are eligible to bid to CIF will also be eligible to bid for HPCF via the CIF process. The same criteria apply to bids for HPCF as to all other CIF bids.

Responsible bodies that receive School Condition Allocations (and are therefore not eligible for CIF) will receive a direct allocation from the HPCF. This direct allocation is in addition to their normal SCA and will be announced and paid alongside it.

Deadline for applications

The deadline for submitting applications is 4pm on 20 December 2017.

Guidance for schools and sixth-form colleges on applying to CIF

The Condition Improvement Fund Information for Applicants guidance provides further detail of projects that are appropriate for CIF funding and the assessment criteria for the 2018 to 2019 round.

If you are a school or sixth-form college considering applying to CIF, you should refer to this guidance.

If you wish to apply for CIF funding, you must do so using the CIF portal which includes a detailed user guide to help you.


Academies and sixth-form colleges can take out a loan for all or part of the project costs in their CIF proposal to demonstrate their commitment to the scheme.

CIF Loan: Repayment Calculator 2017

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Loans are to be offered at Public Works Loan Board rates of interest, the same rate that local authorities can access to invest in their schools. Loans repayments are to be made through abatement of revenue funding paid to the academy or college and reinvested into future capital budgets.


If you need further advice after the publication of the full guidance, please contact us using:

ESFA Enquiry form

Published 16 October 2014
Last updated 14 December 2017 + show all updates
  1. Update on the CIF portal.
  2. update regarding the CIF Portal
  3. Amended to advise of problems with CIF portal and notice of extension to the deadline for applications
  4. Page updated to announce launch of the 2018 to 2019 CIF round together with revised guidance for applicants.
  5. Page updated following the announcement of the CIF 2017 to 2018 outcomes
  6. Amended to show that the Condition Improvement Fund applications deadline has been reached and no further applications for the 2017 to 2018 round will be accepted.
  7. Updated to include information for applicants for the 2017 to 2018 Condition Improvement Fund bidding round.
  8. Minor changes to reflect that the outcomes for 2016 to 2017 have been announced
  9. Updated with information for applicants 2016 to 2017.
  10. Updated with information about applying for CIF for 2016 to 2017.
  11. Updated with information on appeal outcomes
  12. Updated with information about the outcome of CIF 2015 to 2016.
  13. Updated to confirm that the application system is closed.
  14. Updated to change the application deadline date to 13 January.
  15. Updated with advice about submitted online applications.
  16. Updated with a link to the CIF online application and the CIF 2015 to 2016 online application user guide
  17. Updated with online application document
  18. Loan calculator added
  19. Webinar details added.
  20. Updated with detailed information for applicants.
  21. First published.