Unions warn that Tories’ new funding plan isn’t enough
SCHOOLS across England face losing thousands of pounds from their annual budgets, affecting every primary and secondary school pupil, six unions warned yesterday.
They said that 88 per cent of state schools face real-terms budget cuts per pupil between 2015-16 and 2019-20.
The average primary school will lose £52,546 a year while secondary schools will lose an average £178,321 each.
This is on top of the £2.8 billion cut suffered since 2015, according to the National Education Union (NEU), National Association of Head Teachers (NAHT), Association of School and College Leaders (ASCL) and support-staff unions GMB, Unison and Unite.
As a result the School Cuts website — schoolcuts.org.uk — has been updated to reflect the government’s latest figures on school funding.
The warning follows an announcement on school funding by Education Secretary Justine Greening last week that the unions said presented a “bleak picture” for schools.
A campaign by parents, trade unions, teachers, heads and support staff had resulted in the government finding £1.3bn over the next two years.
But that money is taken from other parts of the department’s budget and is still “nowhere near enough” to reverse the cuts that schools have suffered under the Tories and Lib Dems.
NEU joint general secretary Mary Bousted said: “The bottom line is that the government has still not found enough funding for schools.
“The cuts schools are already having to make are only going to get worse, with most schools being faced with cutting subjects, increasing class sizes, cutting staffing, reducing the support for vulnerable children and providing a less-rounded education for pupils.”
NAHT general secretary designate Paul Whiteman said the cuts were “unsustainable” and that many schools “are at breaking point.”
“Children are losing out,” he said. “The growing crisis cannot be ignored any longer.”
ASCL general secretary Geoff Barton said: “The education of our children is too important to sacrifice on the altar of austerity.”
GMB national secretary Rehana Azam accused the government of “playing a dangerous game with our children’s future” and demanded a reversal of the cuts to protect an already overstretched education system before it’s too late.