The ring-fenced protection of spending on schools is likely to continue, Chancellor George Osborne has signalled. This is from the BBC…
Next month the chancellor will present his Spending Review, which will see cuts in many areas.
There had been speculation that school spending might also face cuts.
But Mr Osborne said: “I’m also going to try to protect money going into schools, so that we educate our children for the future.”
Speaking on Tuesday, the chancellor said that seven government departments had so far agreed savings to be implemented from 2015, as part of a target of £11.5bn budget cuts.
Spending on schools has so far been protected, but there had been claims that this ring-fencing could be removed.
The Reform think tank last week floated the idea that school budgets could be cut by 18% without damaging standards.
Head teachers’ leader Brian Lightman had warned that such cuts would mean closing down “significant numbers” of schools.
But Mr Osborne said that the next spending round was about “tough choices” and that he had to make a “tough decision” in protecting areas of priority spending.
Along with spending on the NHS, he suggested that schools could also avoid the budget cuts facing other departments.
“I’m also going to try to protect money going into schools, so that we educate our children for the future,” said the chancellor.
He said that “big sums of money go on things like the NHS and our school system” and that he had to make “tough decisions to protect those budgets by cutting the budgets of other departments”.
If this ring-fence is confirmed next month, the Department for Education will still be expected to make savings, but the budget for schools will be protected.