Continue to ask right questions

Date: Tuesday 1st August 2017

Sir, While the promise of an extra £1.3 billion over two years and an ongoing commitment to a new national funding formula from April, 2018, as well as a new formula for high needs funding, is a step in the right direction, it’s a long way from the minimum of £2 billion a year we know schools will need to protect core budgets.

Parents and school governors should continue to ask important questions of the Government’s commitment to supporting the high quality of provision established in our Cumbrian schools.

It does seem that the Department for Education has listened to the concerns of parent groups and headteachers and, by releasing this funding, it is doing its bit to address the looming financial gap.

However, the Treasury is still not backing this up with new, additional funding and without its support the threat to our schools remains.

The National Association of Headteachers shares Penrith and the Border MP’s Rory Stewart welcome (Herald, 22nd July) for the commitment to a national funding formula for schools and for pupils with high needs.

We hope that Mr. Stewart will now join with fellow MPs in pressing government to pass the legislation that will ensure that funding does go directly to schools (legislation currently held up by the Brexit agenda) and lobbies the Treasury to release the additional funds needed to support school communities and offer security of provision to children in our precious state schools. Yours etc,

TIM GLENDINNING

(NAHT national executive officer, Cumbria)

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