Spending Review: School funding to be overhauled from 2017 to bring national rate per pupil

The BBC is reporting that, as anticipated, George Osborne has confirmed the funding of schools in England will be overhauled to remove big regional differences in levels of per pupil funding.

The chancellor said education was the “door to opportunity” and announced a new national funding formula from 2017…

The changes to the allocation of school funding will set a national rate for each pupil, with extra funding for those with additional needs…

Graham Stuart, former chair of the education select committee, has been campaigning for this change and said “in principle this represents a huge step forward”.

Teachers’ unions said that despite redistributions of funding, the overall national picture remained a forecast fall of 8% in real-terms school budgets.

The reallocation could mean a big loss of funding for London boroughs, said the NUT.

“There are no winners and losers under the government’s funding proposals – there are only losers and even bigger losers,” said the NUT’s Kevin Courtney.

The total financial support for education and childcare is to increase by £10bn over the next five years.

Mr Osborne gave details of an employers’ levy to fund apprenticeships. He said it would be 0.5% of the wage bill and would raise £3bn per year, but would only apply to bigger employers.

He confirmed the proposals for 30 hours of free childcare for three- and four-year-olds, but with a threshold of parents working at least 16 hours per week and earning less than £100,000.

The chancellor said an extra 250,000 further-education students, part-time students and postgraduates would benefit from extra loans.

And the adult skills budget for further-education colleges would be protected in cash terms…

Sixth-form colleges would become eligible for academy status, added Mr Osborne, which would affect about 100 colleges…

More at: Spending Review: School funding to be overhauled


We obviously remain no nearer to the crucial detail on how the funding overhaul will actually work, but your thoughts on the comments made so far?

What about the other measures such as the employers’ levy for apprenticeships, more loans for FE students and the option for sixth-form colleges to gain academy status?

Please give us your reactions and feedback in the comments or via Twitter…


Read or download the spending review in full:



And more from the DfE: Department for Education’s settlement at the Spending Review 2015


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  1. acet2001

    SchoolsImprove Shire counties in particular will gain but I guarantee the overall size of the education pot will shrink. Losers > Winners.

  2. While it’s right to end the discrepancies between what LAs receive, it appears the Chancellor is just shifting round the already inadequate pot.  
    The £10b extra for education AND childcare over five years is just £2b a year.  Remember, £1b was overspent on the academies programme early in the last Parliament – seems money is available for politicians’ pet projects.

  3. Julie_Cordiner

    The key challenge will be managing expectations, in particular the speed of increases. That will depend on the rate of withdrawing funding from other areas that is possible without a drastic impact on outcomes.
    Let’s not forget some areas will still receive lower funding than others, because their needs are lower. The question is what differential is fair to reflect the different types of needs.

  4. TW

    Graham Stuart is right that “in principle this represents a huge step forward”.  We still wait to see whether the principle actually becomes a fact in 2017 or ever.

  5. andylutwyche

    SchoolsImprove I’ll believe it when it actually happens as this govt has more u-turns in it than a mountain pass. Potential good news?

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