School Enhancement Programme Second Call

The School Enhancement Programme was first established in June 2012 and provides financial support for capital projects valued at between £500,000 and £4 million. The 2nd call for projects opened in January 2017 with a closure date of 28 February 2017 and encouraged applications addressing immediate and pressing accommodation needs in schools.

An announcement was made on 21 January 2019 by DE’s Permanent Secretary, Derek Baker, of a further 16 schools which have been successful in the 2nd call of the School Enhancement Programme. In his announcement Derek Baker indicated that:

 “This is a significant investment in our schools estate with a further 16 projects now progressing to planning stage. The School Enhancement Programme continues to provide much-needed improvements and new accommodation for the benefit of our young people and staff.

“Continued investment in our schools estate is essential if we are to help support our teaching staff to deliver a quality education to our children and young people.”

The announcement represents a second tranche of projects to be progressed from this call with the potential for further schools to be approved in the future. 

The schools proceeding are -

Primary schools

  • Antrim Primary School
  • Ballyclare Primary School
  • Dungannon Primary School
  • Fairview Primary School, Ballyclare
  • Glengormley CI Primary School
  • St Brides Primary School, Belfast
  • St Joseph’s Primary School, Belfast
  • St Mary’s Primary School, Newtownbutler
  • The Thompson PS, Ballyrobert

Post-primary schools

  • Dominican College, Portstewart
  • Methodist College, Belfast
  • St Columbanus’ College, Bangor
  • St Mary’s Christian Brothers’ GS, Belfast
  • St Patrick’s & St Brigid’s College, Claudy

Special schools

  • Kilronan School, Magherafelt
  • Lisanally School, Armagh

Further Information

Note: SEP projects historically had a maximum funding threshold of £4m (all project costs apart from VAT and internal fees). However, due to concerns that construction cost increases would mean that SEP2 schools would receive less investment than SEP1, the Minister agreed in September 2021 that projects would have a construction cost limit of £2.9m, measured at 2019 rates, with an increase in cash limit in line with prevailing market conditions. At today’s rates, the total project cost is currently circa £5m (ex VAT).

School Enhancement Programme - Second Call Protocol for selection

School Enhancement Programme - Equality and Human Rights Policy Screening Form

School Enhancement Programme - Second Call - First Announcement 8 May 2018

School Enhancement Programme - Second Call – Announcement 14 Jan 2020  

School Enhancement Programme - Second Call – Announcement 05 May 2020

School Enhancement Programme - Second Call – Schools advancing in Design under the Second call

Schools Advancing in Design under the Second Call | Department of Education (


As the demands on the budget far exceed funding available, schools on the SEP2 programme have been advised that it is unlikely we will be able to commence construction of any further projects in 2023/24. Funding is available to progress the projects through the RIBA design stages to pre-tender stage and planning of all projects is progressing. The timing of the projects proceeding to construction will be dependent on budget availability at that time.

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