EVERY Newham school to lose out under proposed funding plans
PUBLISHED: 13:49 17 March 2017 | UPDATED: 15:20 20 March 2017
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Every school in Newham will lose money if plans intended to make funding fairer are approved, a report out today has shown.
According to the Education Policy Institute (EPI) study, 82 schools face budget cuts with spending per pupil set to drop from £6,047 to £5,890.
The EPI report also concluded there are unlikely to be any schools in England which will avoid a cut in per pupil funding by 2019-20, even in areas set to benefit from the new formula, because of “wider financial pressures”.
Even though a greater share of funding is proposed for disadvantaged pupils, the research finds the overall impact of redistributing the schools budget results in taking funding away from the most disadvantaged pupils towards the children of parents who are ‘just about managing’.
Commenting on the proposals, East Ham MP Stephen Timms said: “I’m very disappointed the government is taking money away from schools in areas like ours in order to hand it to people in better off areas.”
He added that he was pleased by a government decision to factor into their plans the costs schools incur as a result of pupils who leave during their studies, but expressed regret that the borough would lose out overall.
“I don’t object in principle to having a formula, but I do object to schools seeing cuts in their budgets.
“The proposals undoubtedly mean it is going to get harder for schools to recruit the teachers they need in order to give their pupils the opportunities they need.” he said. “There should be transitional support while we move towards a new formula.”
West Ham MP Lyn Brown added: “I’m really worried by these changes to school funding.
“It will become much more difficult for our hard-working teachers to give our children the excellent education, and the opportunities, that they deserve.”
In response, minister for school standards Nick Gibb said that school funding is at its highest level on record and is set to rise to £42bn in 2019-20 with increasing pupil numbers.
“Our proposed new funding formula will help end historical unfairness so schools are funded according to their pupils’ needs, rather than by their postcode, with more than half set to receive a cash boost,” he added.
“We recognise that schools are facing cost pressures, which is why we will help them use their funding in cost effective ways without affecting educational outcomes.
The Government consultation on the introduction of a new national funding formula closes on March 22.