Heads postpone march after funding pledge

Worth Less? has called off a planned London funding demonstration while headteachers digest the spending review

Mark Smulian

whitehall

Headteachers have called off a planned demonstration on school funding following this week’s spending review.

They had been due to march on Westminster on 27 September, with 5,000 heads expected to attend.


News: Heads to march for school funding out of 'desperation' 

Analysis: spending review education announcements

Opinion: Schools are in crisis now. Why must they wait for cash?


But Jules White, spokesman for the grassroots Worth Less? campaign and head of Tanbridge School, Horsham, said the spending review announcements of increased funding for schools meant heads had “won a battle but not the war". No new date has been set for the march.

Mr White explained: “Due to the immense political uncertainty and a need to fully digest the implications of the chancellor’s spending review Worth Less? has postponed the march set for 27 September.

“While we are hopeful that education may improve from a very poor base we are by no means ending our campaign.

“As a relentlessly reasonable group of school leaders we are requesting a meeting with the Gavin Williamson so that we can clarify important details going forward.”

Some 2,000 heads attended the Worth Less? demonstration this time last year when they handed a petition to the then chancellor Philip Hammond on “rising costs, school budgets on the edge of viability and an inability to recruit and then afford adequate numbers of teaching and support staff”.

Heads said last month they would repeat this because they were "desperate" for government action on funding.

The spending review today included a £7.1 billion funding increase for schools by 2022-23 and an extra £4.4 billion for teacher pensions.

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Mark Smulian

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