Teenagers studying A-levels in Wales have £1,000 less spent on their education every year than in England, a council official has said. A specialist officer for post 16 education at Bridgend council calculated the sum by comparing the English and Welsh models for funding schools and colleges after GCSE. Wales Online reports.
Bridgend council’s John Fabes, specialist officer for Post 16 Education figures show pupils in Wales studying three A levels and the Welsh baccalaureate would have £3,399 spent on their education every year. In England, a pupils studying four A levels would have £4,400 spent on their education every year.
He says the funding gap raises questions over the provision of resources for students who are being prepared to compete with their peers across the UK for places in employment, higher apprenticeships and universities.
“If you were to look at it within the context of Bridgend, I’m suggesting we are probably about £1.5m under-funded compared with a similar authority in England.”
The funding rate for each student is determined by the size of their study programme based on their planned hours.
In Wales, students studying the standard three A levels plus the Welsh Baccalaureate have a programme of 711 hours a year but receive £3,399 funding compared to £4,400 that English students would have for four A levels.
For teenagers studying two A levels and the Welsh Baccalaureate, the difference is more stark as they have a programme of 549 hours a year and receive £2,624 funding while students in England studying four A-levels receive £4,000.
In a report going before cabinet members next week, Mr Fabes states: “The major cost of delivery is the salaries of teachers and these are the same in both countries but a comparison of the funding levels shows a significant difference with Wales being at a disadvantage.
“This lower level of funding places the delivery of sixth-form provision under greater pressure in Wales.”
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