5,500 schools face years of financial misery

31 January 2017

At the Education Select Committee today, Nick Gibb MP, Minister of State for Schools, admitted that 5,500 schools are on the funding “floor”.

These schools are the big losers from the proposed introduction of a National Funding Formula. They will have their cash funding cut by 3% but that is on top of an 8% real terms cut over this Parliament. If that was not difficult enough for them to manage, they will then have their income slowly squeezed for years to come as their income will not be increased in line with inflation.

Kevin Courtney, General Secretary of the National Union of Teachers, the largest teachers’ union, said:

“The Government are breaking their promise to protect school funding. The combination of real terms cuts in funding and the reorganisation of school funding through the introduction of a national funding formula is putting many schools in an impossible position.

“Today the Government admitted that 5,500 schools – that’s more than a quarter of all primary and secondary schools – not only face at least 10% cuts this Parliament but that they will then have years and years without an increase in income.

“It is difficult to see how these schools are supposed to cope with such massive cuts.

“It is disgraceful that the Government have not told these schools that they are in this position and they have not told them how many years they can expect to face real terms cuts.

“The NUT call on the Government to come clean with schools and parents about the scale of cuts and how many more years they are going to go on for.”

Editor’s Note

During today’s Commons Education Select Committee session on School Funding, the following exchange took place:


Suella Fernandes MP: “In terms of the formula floor that’s been introduced whereby no school will face an overall reduction of more than 3% per pupil, can you just explain what’s the rationale for that? How many schools do you anticipate may be affected by it?”

we’re saying 3% in total. I think that is important. And 73% of all schools will reach their full gain, we are expediting gains, at 3% in 2018/19 and 2.5% on top of that in 2019/20. And that represents about 73% of schools and of the 9,000 that will lose, 5,000 are benefitting from the 3% funding floor so about 5,000 schools, about 5,500 schools.”

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