Exceptional costs associated with coronavirus (COVID-19)

Dec 7, 2020 | Finance Posts


These instructions are to help you claim exceptional costs related to coronavirus (COVID-19) that were not claimed for during the first window which closed on 21 July 2020. Further information about this is set out in the guidance for exceptional costs associated with coronavirus (COVID-19) for the period from March to July 2020.

Who are these instructions for?

These instructions are for schools, academies, local authorities and multi-academy trusts.

Important points

The online form should be completed by 22 December 2020 for unclaimed eligible exceptional costs incurred from March to July 2020, or during the 2020 summer holiday period for additional free school meals costs.

The Education and Skills Funding Agency (ESFA) will aim to pay against claims within funding limits and for identified cost categories received by that date to local authorities at the end of February 2021 and to academies at the beginning of March 2021.

There will be no opportunity to request extensions to this claims window or to resubmit a claim after that date.

This will be the final opportunity to submit a claim against this funding.

Who is eligible to submit a claim?

Claims must be made at school/academy level but can be submitted by individual establishments or collectively by multi-academy trusts on behalf of their academies (via a single claim). Local authorities will have read only access to the claims made by their schools, but will not be able to submit claims on their behalf. Claims may be submitted using the online form by establishments in the following categories:

  • primary/secondary/all through maintained schools, academies, and free schools
  • 16 to 19 academies and maintained schools
  • maintained special schools
  • special academies and free schools
  • non-maintained special schools
  • pupil referral units
  • alternative provision academies and free schools
  • maintained hospital schools and academies

How to access the claim form

To access the claim form you will need a DfE Sign-in account.

If you already have a DfE Sign-in account

  1. Go to the claim form
  2. When prompted, enter your DfE Sign-in credentials (this is just for authentication)
  3. Choose the organisation for whom you are completing the form
  4. Complete the form as instructed in the following sections
  5. To access the form for another organisation, sign out and follow steps 1 to 4 again

Your account must be connected to the organisation you are completing the claim form for. You do not need to add any services in DfE Sign-in; it is used only for authentication.

If you do not have a DfE Sign-in account

You will need to create one by completing the following steps:

  1. Select the create account button from the DfE Sign-in page
  2. Enter your name and email address (it is best to use your work email address or one that is clearly associated with your organisation)
  3. We will send you an email to verify your email address; copy the code from this email and paste it into the box on the verification page
  4. Create a memorable password of 12 characters or more (we recommend joining 3 or more familiar words)
  5. Sign in using your new credentials, and request access to the organisation for which you would like to submit a claim

Once your request to access an organisation has been approved, you can follow the steps outlined under already have a DfE account to complete the form.

You might have noticed the term ‘approver’ during account creation. An approver is someone at your organisation responsible for controlling who has access to DfE Sign-in and the services within the system. It is usually a senior person, such as an administrator or manager.