Strategic Development FundFund: apply now

FundingApply thatfor helpsstrategic FEdevelopment providersfunding tofor respondthe tofinancial skillsyear needs.2022 to 2023.

Applies to England


The Skills for Jobs white paper set out the government’s blueprint for reshaping the technical skills system to better support the needs of the local labour market and the wider economy.

As part of this new approach,approach the Strategic Development Fund (SDF) wasis now being opened to collaborations of further education (FE) providers across all areas of EnglandEngland. in spring 2022.

This followed a pilot year in which SDF was trialled in 18 areas across England.

The SDF provides capital and programme funding to:

  • to support changes in local teaching and training facilities and provisionprovision, soenabling asFE providers to better meet the needs of employers
  • employers, support local innovation and economic growth
  • growth, and develop a more efficient overall delivery infrastructure

What is the Strategic Development Fund?Fund is

TheThis one-year SDF provideswill provide investment to enable areas across England to reshape their teaching and training provision and update their facilities in preparation for the rolloutroll out of the Local Skills Improvement Plans.Plans.

The purpose of the fund is to:

  • support providers across an area to upgrade their facilities, equipment and curriculum to better meet the needs of their local economy
  • enable colleges and other FE providers to build their overall capacity to meet local skills priorities, and to drive more effective and efficient use of funds through a more coordinated FE offer
  • support ongoing FE provider quality improvement through FE workforce training, developing sector-led approaches to peer-to-peer support, sharing good practice,practice including two-way industry exchanges with FE providers
  • stimulate employer demand for and investment in skills leading to more sustainable provision, including by raising awareness about new technologies and driving the adoption of innovation in local businesses, especially in small andmedium medium-sized enterprises

FundingWho can apply

Applications may be made by groups of colleges and providers. It must be submitted by a lead applicant.

The deadlinelead forapplicant applicationsmust forbe from one of the secondfollowing:

  • general roundFE ofcollege
  • an SDFinstitution which has been designated as being in the FE wassector
  • FE 13colleges Mayin 2022.

    their capacity as licensee of an Institute of Technology (IoT)

Apply for strategic development funding

  1. AreasRead acrossthe Englandapplication thatguidance will(PDF, benefit380 fromKB, this31 fundingpages)

  2. Register willto beuse announcedour ine-tendering Septemberportal 2022.Jaggaer to submit any questions.

  3. TheComplete secondyour roundexpression of SDFinterest consistsusing the Strategic Development Fund application form (MS Word Document, 129 KB).

  4. Email your expression of £92interest millionto (£ millionby midday on 13 May 2022.

All lead applicants will receive an email informing them of capitalthe fundingoutcome andof £42their millionapplication.


The fund consists of programme£92m funding).(£50m capital and £42m programme).

Each area couldmay apply for up to £1.5£1.25m million of capitalprogramme funding and £1.25£1.5m millioncapital of programme funding.

Further details of what the fund can support are in the application guidance (PDF, 486380 KB, 3531 pages).

ContactLocal Skills Improvement Plans

EmailLocal anySkills queriesImprovement toPlans help:

  • bring 20employers, Aprilcolleges 2021
    Lastand updatedother 4providers, Augustand 2022 + showlocal allstakeholders updates
    1. set Augustout 2022

      Pagethe updatedkey changes needed to removemake informationtechnical aboutskills applyingtraining more responsive to employers’ skills need

    2. tailor provision to the challenges and opportunities most relevant to the local area

In 2021 to 2022 LSIPs were piloted in 8 areas. Where a trailblazer Local Skills Improvement Plan (LSIP) exists for fundingan area or part of an area, it should be the basis for 2022establishing skills priorities for applications to 2023,the Strategic Development Fund.

Where there is no trailblazer LSIP or parts of the geography are not covered by a trailblazer LSIP, other relevant skills analyses such as those produced by the applicationrelevant windowMayoral hasCombined closed.Authority Addedor thatLocal areasEnterprise whichPartnership willshould benefitbe fromused.

Subject to the fundingRoyal Assent of the Skills and Post-16 Education Bill, we will shortly be announcedinviting inEmployer SeptemberRepresentative 2022.Bodies Added(ERBs) ato linksubmit expressions of interest to statutorydevelop guidancefurther onLocal localSkills skillsImprovement improvementPlans.


Questions plans.relating to an SDF application must be submitted through Jaggaer.

For other queries email

Published 20 April 2021
Last updated 1 April 2022 + show all updates
  1. Updated as the application window for the Strategic Development Fund for 2022 to 2023 is now open.

  2. Removed information about the online event where prospective bidders can find out more about the Skills Accelerator as that has now taken place. Added a link to the video for the Skills Accelerator virtual conference.

  3. First published.