'More spent on free schools as older buildings deteriorate'

The government has provided almost 600,000 new school places in five years.


The government has pledged billions for new free schools while existing school buildings in England are deteriorating, says the official spending watchdog.


Repairing all school buildings to a satisfactory standard will cost an estimated £6.7bn, according to a National Audit Office report.


Under government plans 833 free schools will open by 2021, costing £9.7bn.


The government said free schools were a vital part of meeting demand for new school places.


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