Education funding: NEU lays down five tests for the chancellor’s Budget

Education Executive reports that on November 22, the chancellor, Philip Hammond, will reveal the Budget. The education sector has been a hive of activity, making very clear the need for funding if we are to meet the education needs of young people

Ahead of the Budget the National Education Union has written pressing the chancellor to invest in our children and young people’s education. For too long the government has ignored the real and pressing problems faced by our teachers, school staff, children and young people.

The National Education Union will be looking closely at the chancellor’s Budget to check that it passes our five tests to ensure a high-quality education for all our children:

  1. Reverse school cuts: This academic year has begun with more cuts to educational provision and more cuts to staffing in schools.  The Budget must ensure that every school is guaranteed at least the same money per pupil next year as when it took office in 2015.
  2. New money is needed from the Treasury: The Budget must announce genuinely new money for schools, not money taken from other areas of education spending. At least £2bn more is required every year just to maintain funding in real terms in the face of inflation, cost increases and rising pupil numbers.
  3. High needs, early years and post-16 education fairly funded: Funding must also be increased for “high needs” pupils, early years pupils and 16-19 education, all of which have suffered even bigger real terms cuts since 2010.
  4. A five-year funding plan: Schools need to be able to plan for the future. With pupil numbers rising and costs increasing, they need to know how much money they will receive. Funding must be announced and guaranteed for at least the next five years.
  5. Historic underfunding addressed: Schools in historically underfunded areas must receive extra money through a process of levelling up with better funded areas. Fair funding won’t be achieved by taking money away from some schools to give to other schools. There must be enough new money to make a difference for every pupil, wherever they live.

Mary Bousted, joint general secretary, National Education Union said: “The chancellor must not fear amending his fiscal rules in line with our five tests to better safeguard our children’s future.

Read more Education funding: NEU lays down five tests for the chancellor’s Budget

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