Damian Hinds and Theresa May both promised that “every school” would get a cash increase. (1) NEU analysis of the new figures from the Government (published on 17 December) shows that, shockingly, they have broken even that meagre promise for 4,819 schools – that’s a quarter of primary schools (25%) and one in six secondary schools (17%). (2)

These schools received no cash increase or suffered an actual cut to their funding, despite school costs shooting up dramatically. To protect school standards, all schools should be fully protected against rising school costs.

Kevin Courtney, Joint General Secretary of the National Education Union, said: “This is yet another failure and another broken promise by Government on school funding. The fact remains that schools were never going to manage on the money promised by Government. However, head teachers, teachers, school staff and parents will be dismayed that even the meagre amounts of funds supposedly allocated to schools will not be received by everyone. Parents and school staff simply cannot trust what the Government says on education funding.

“Schools and sixth form colleges have been systematically underfunded with £2bn a year taken away from them since 2015. This is not pin money, it cannot be retrieved by just good housekeeping. Up and down the country schools are increasing class sizes, reducing teachers and school staff, cutting subjects from the curriculum and leaving building repairs undone. Ask any parent and they will tell you that begging letters for financial support are now commonplace. The School Cuts campaign, alongside parent groups and MPs, will continue in 2019 to argue the case that our children’s education is vital. For it to be of the quality and breadth that we expect, it needs funding to match that expectation.”



Editor’s Notes

1. See: Prime Minister at PMQs, 23 May 2018:

“On school funding, as the hon. Gentleman knows, the new national funding formula is providing for a cash increase for every school in every region, as well as protected funding for those with additional needs, but it is important that the Department for Education is helping to bear down on costs that schools are experiencing.”

Damian Hinds, Secretary of State for Education, Hansard, 29 January and 5 March 2018: 

“….each school will see at least a small cash increase….”

Damian Hinds, Hansard, 25 April 2018:

“We have gone further than our manifesto promise that no school would lose funding as a result of the national funding formula. The formula is in fact giving every local authority more money for every pupil in every school in 2018-19 and 2019-20. Every school is attracting at least a cash increase of 0.5% per pupil through the formula this year, and 1% more next year, compared with their baselines”

2. We compared the Schools Block funding allocations for 2017/18 and 2018/19.

In 4,819 schools the Schools Block Allocation (Post MFG) plus the Teacher Pay Grant in 2018/19 is equal to or lower than the Schools Block Allocation (Post MFG) in 2017/18. The Teacher Pay Grant was introduced in 2018/19.