MP welcomes extra 1.3 billion pounds for schools
Arundel & South Downs MP Nick Herbert has welcomed the Government’s announcement of an extra £1.3 billion of funding for schools.
In a statement to the House of Commons last month the Education Secretary, Justine Greening, said that the money would be on top of plans already set out by the Government.
The commitment of extra resources for schools and high needs increases core funding from almost £41 billion this year to a record £43.5 billion in two years’ time. It also maintains funding per pupil in real terms for the two year period.
The announcement means that the Government will be spending more on schools over the next two years than Labour promised at the election.
Mr Herbert has been making a strong case for fair funding for West Sussex schools, and has joined other West Sussex MPs in urging the Government to look again at how schools are funded.
The Government has proposed a new national fair funding formula. Last year draft proposals for the new formula proposed an overall uplift of funding in West Sussex of 2.9 per cent – an increase of £14.3 million, or £122 per pupil.
However, West Sussex MPs pointed out that although the new formula would mean welcome additional funding for most secondary schools, this would not be enough to compensate for rising costs, while many primary schools would actually have lost out from the change. The Government has now said that no school will lose out as a result of the new formula.
In March West Sussex MPs, led by Nick Herbert, sent a robust submission to the Department of Education urging that the proposed formula should be redesigned to provide a minimum level of funding for schools.
The Government will respond to its consultation in September and will then reveal the actual funding position for every school.
Nick Herbert said: “This substantial extra funding for schools is a welcome step in the right direction. The Government has been listening to our concerns.
"It's obviously not right that West Sussex schools receive less funding per pupil than equivalents in any other shire county. I have made the strongest case for fair funding to help our schools, and I will continue to do so.
“We will know more when the Government makes further announcements in the Autumn. In the meantime, I hope that head teachers will relay this information about extra funding to parents.”
1. Justine Greening's verbal statement to Parliament: https://www.gov.uk/government/speeches/justine-greening-statement-to-parliament-on-school-funding.
2. Justine Greening's written statement to Parliament: https://www.gov.uk/government/speeches/schools-funding.
3. To read the letter signed by Mr Herbert on behalf of West Sussex MPs in response to the consultation (March 2017) see here.