Adding up the taking away
Concern pupils would be hit hard by proposed funding cuts
SchoolS across west london have raised concerns over proposed government cuts including the ability to continue to hire ‘high quality teachers and leaders.’
A consultation is under way into proposals to recalculate the National Funding Formula, under which schools will see funding slashed.
Parents are being urged to voice their opposition on the issue with fears over the quality of education that will be delivered, as the government wants to redistribute school funding the country.
According to London councils the move will effect around 70% of schools in the capital, which is estimated to be more than 1,500 schools.
In Hounslow, analysis published by six teaching unions claimed the borough would receive on average £462 less in spending per pupil, as a result of the government’s formula changes.
At the Hounslow borough council meeting on Tuesday January 31, councillors supported a motion to call on the government to fully consider the impact a suggested cut in funding would have on schools in the borough, and their ability to maintain high standards and quality of provision.
Councillor Tom Bruce, across cabinet member for education at Hounslow council , said: “A clear message was sent out to government, from across the political divide in Hounslow, to think again about further reductions to schools budgets in the borough.”
MP for Brentford and Isleworth Ruth Cadbury spoke about her concerns in Parliament last week, particularly over the cuts leading to fewer teachers which she says will “have a devastating effect on the quality of education given to our students.”
Kathryn HarperQuinn, head at Hounslow Heath infants school, said: “Why does the government feel that continually raising the expectations for what children are expected to achieve is a successful strategy, while at the same time slashing the budgets that schools need to reach these high standards?”
Schools in Hammersmith and Fulham council face one of the biggest cuts in the country, losing £2.8m a year.
Analysis by six teaching unions claim pupils in the borough will lose out by £796 a year per pupil on average, compared to 2015 funding levels.
The analysis ranked the Hammersmith constituency as the eighth worst hit in the country and Chelsea and Fulham as seventh.
Peter Haylock, the executive principal of the Fulham College Academy Trust, and chair of the borough’s Schools Forum, said: “If schools’ budgets are cut, at a time when costs are increasingly significantly, it can only have a negative effect on the education that we are able to deliver.
“We will not be able to employ the number of high quality teachers and leaders that we need to be able to maintain standards.”
Among the biggest losers in the borough will be Ark Burlington Danes Academy, London Oratory, Sacred Heart, Melcombe, according to Hammersmith and Fulham council.
Hammersmith and Fulham council, councillor Sue Fennimore added: “It’s clear that the government is trying to redistribute a pot of funding that is just too small.
“Cutting funding hardest in London, rather than giving all schools the money they need for teachers, buildings and equipment, is divisive and just plain wrong.
“We’re backing all our local schools and parents and are calling on the government to rethink these changes to the funding formula before the damage is done to children and young people’s education.”
Other councils including Ealing, Hillingdon, Brent and Harrow will be impacted. Councils are urging residents to share their views in the government’s consultation which runs until March 22.
Any parents or teachers who would like to raise their concerns to getwestlondon, please email salina.patel@ trinitymirrorcom
GREAT CONCERN: Ruth Cadbury, MP for Brentford and Isleworth, raised concerns in the House of Commons about Parliament about the school budget cuts