The Government’s proposed new funding formula will see schools in my constituency suffer massively. Across the country, the average loss per primary school pupil by 2020 is £339, in Lewisham Deptford it’s 40% more than that at £558. Secondary schools in my constituency will also suffer hugely, with an average loss of £717 per pupil by 2020.
I support the idea that all schools should receive fair funding. However, simply taking money away from existing schools and redistributing it, when budgets all across the country are being cut, is not the answer. School budgets are facing the highest real-term cuts since the 1970s. We cannot afford to see essential services cut, staff cut, the curriculum being cut, and specialist support being cut.
A lack of funding in the system will be damaging to the community. In a time when we should be aiming to do everything in our power to close the attainment gap, I fear this will only widen it.
The only new money being offered to English schools is to expand the few remaining grammar schools, regardless of where school places are needed. I will continue to push the Government on this issue, in the hopes they realise that simply moving inadequate sums of money around could have detrimental effects.