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The Solar for Schools Community Benefit Society Ltd (CBS) was set up in 2016. It aims to help schools across England Scotland, and Wales to get solar power without having to invest their capital in solar panels. Schools buy low-cost, zero carbon electricity and they share in the expected long-term surplus income generated by each solar project.


The community of schools is governed by the schools with the solar PV. It allows schools to have hassle-free solar electricity without on-going costs of asset ownership.

In the UK, over 3,000 schools have managed to ‘go solar’ with many benefiting from government subsidies. But over 24,000 remain without solar power. Today with no solar power subsidies it is difficult for most schools to ‘go solar’. Yet the environmental impact from direct carbon reduction and behavioural change from sustainability education is more important than ever. 

The Solar for Schools CBS helps all schools, regardless of their financial situation or geographic location, to get solar power, to fight climate change while inspiring and helping the next generation to live more sustainably. 

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Spinfield School installation
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St Christopher's CE High School SFS APP 1

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How does Solar for Schools CBS work?

The solar panel systems are owned by Solar for Schools CBS Ltd (CBS). The CBS is a community benefit society, set up specifically for this purpose and whose members are the schools themselves. So, in addition to the long-term electricity savings that the school gains from having solar panels, any surplus profits – after bondholders have been paid interest from the operation of the solar assets - are shared with the schools. The profits to the schools may be used to reduce their solar electricity bills or to provide sustainability education for teaching and learning programmes. It is the schools themselves that decide on how this additional income is used and distributed. 

Each year over 1,000 tonnes of CO emissions are avoided each year, thanks to the 7.8MW of solar projects across over 100 schools, many of which were fully- funded by the CBS.  We have nearly 100 further school looking to go solar over the coming months, so need to raise about £9m over the next 9 months to help them all. Find out how you can fund solar on a school and help cut carbon here.

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Hollybush Primary School

279 kWp plant installed July 2021

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45,000 students

are learning about energy, electricity, sustainability, ethics and many more subjects thanks to the solar panels on their school roofs. The solar installations on each school provides the anchor of the educational delivery. 

We are making the energy transition tangible.

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