The Institute of Fiscal Studies 2021 annual report on education spending in England published today (30 November), shows that education spending as a proportion of national income has fallen from 5% before the pandemic to 4.4% in 2019-20. It highlights once again that, in real terms, the per-pupil funding of England’s schools fell over the course of a decade between 2010 and 2020, with deprived schools seeing larger cuts over this period than the least deprived schools. Despite the additional £4.4 billion funding announced in the 2021 Spending Review, the report says that spending per pupil in 2024 will be at about the same level as in 2010.
Commenting on the report NGA’s director of advice and guidance Steve Edmonds said:
“NGA welcomes the extra investment in education since 2020. However, a report that shows a period of fifteen years with no overall growth in spending, will be of deep concern to those governing in schools and trusts. Less than half of governors and trustees responding to our annual governance survey in 2021 said that their school or trust finances were sufficient to deliver their strategic priorities for pupils. On their behalf and on behalf of the next generation, we continue to call on the government to provide sufficient, long-term investment in our schools.”