Justine Greening, the new Education Secretary, has announced in a statement to the House of Commons today that the new national funding formula is to be delayed until 2018-19. The statement was made in response to an urgent question raised by Neil Carmichael MP, chair of the Education Select Committee.
Ms Greening said in today’s statement that such was the “overwhelming response” to the first stage of the consultation it confirmed that a new formula was a “once in a generation opportunity for an historic change” which she said the Government must get right. Ms Greening said that the second stage of the funding consultation would now be published in the autumn, after Parliament’s summer recess. Following that consultation decisions about the future funding of schools will be announced in early 2017 for implementation in April 2018.
In the meantime, she said no local authority would receive less funding in 2017-18 than in 2016-17 and the minimum guarantee for schools would remain at -1.5%.
Gillian Allcroft, NGA’s Deputy Chief Executive, said: “While today’s announcement is not surprising, it is none the less disappointing. Governors and trustees of schools in those areas which currently receive the lowest funding are already struggling to make ends meet. The delay of a further year will mean there is an increasing number of schools unable to balance budgets in the coming year without significant cuts which would affect the quality of education provided to pupils.”
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