School funding cuts ‘will leave councils unable to meet legal obligations’

The Guardian are reporting…

Councils have said that funding cuts will leave many local authorities potentially unable to meet legal obligations to schools over issues such as checking staff for criminal records and ensuring buildings are free of asbestos.

The warning from the Local Government Association (LGA) comes amid a wider row about a planned new national funding formula for schools, which prompted concern from a series of backbench Conservative MPs.

Richard Watts, chair of the LGA’s children and young people board, said this would be an extra burden for schools on top of already tight budgets.

“Councils have their hands tied,” he said. “They are legally obliged to provide these services but will have no money to do so unless the school is prepared to pay for it from its own pocket.”

May said the DfE “has heard representations on this issue”. She told the Commons: “But in relation to the funding formula, this is a complex issue. It’s been an issue that’s needed addressing for some time, and we will be looking at it carefully.”

Later, May’s spokesman said this did not indicate a climbdown was looming. “There is a consultation going on,” he said. “The point of that consultation was to gather a series of views and we’ll come forward with conclusions. You’ll get the conclusions in due course.”

More at: School funding cuts ‘will leave councils unable to meet legal obligations’

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