Five schools picked for free makeover to encourage others to think of ways to use small capital budgets

Schools minister Vernon Coaker has helped give a Brighton school dining area a free makeover to highlight the start of a national campaign for school improvements.

Five schools across England are having a classroom or other space improved for free to mark the launch of the Big School Makeover, a campaign led by charity the British Council for School Environments.

Vernon Coaker

The five demonstration projects, sponsored by Willmott Dixon and Dulux, are aimed at encouraging more schools to use small capital budgets to improve their buildings even if they are still waiting for cash from the BSF and primary capital programmes. Involving pupils in the direction of the improvements is central to the campaign.

Coaker helped out at Portslade Community College, Brighton, during the Labour Conference. Other projects are in North Tyneside, Manchester, Cambridge and Devon. All are due to take place by 9 October.