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Labour: Schools face £1.7bn cut over five years

Angela Rayner pledges that a future Labour government would ‘increase per-pupil funding to a record high’

Labour's Angela Rayner says the party would increase per-pupil spending to record levels

Angela Rayner pledges that a future Labour government would ‘increase per-pupil funding to a record high’

Headteachers have renewed calls for a funding boost after a Labour analysis found that school spending will have been cut by £1.7 billion over five years.

The party used Institute for Fiscal Studies figures showing that spending per pupil in primary and secondary schools is set to fall by £195.88 and £256.77 respectively between 2014-15 and 2019-20, using 2018-19 prices.

Labour’s analysis found that, had per-pupil funding been maintained at 2014-15 levels, annual spending on schools would be £1.7 billion higher next year.

It follows last week’s Budget, in which chancellor Philip Hammond controversially gave schools a one-off £400 million to buy “little extras” this year, but no new money for ongoing costs such as teachers.

Labour’s shadow education secretary, Angela Rayner, said: “Instead of offering a sticking plaster to schools, this government should be genuinely investing in them, reversing their unjustifiable cuts.

'Severe' real-terms budget cuts

“The next Labour government will reverse these cuts, giving our schools the resources they need and increasing per-pupil funding to a record high.”

Paul Whiteman, general secretary of the NAHT headteachers’ union, said: "Not only are schools facing severe real-terms cuts to their budgets, the demands on them are greater than ever before.

The government itself has acknowledged this but last week the chancellor still failed to find the money needed to make a difference. Schools and young people are much too far down the government’s list of priorities.

"Ignoring the issue of school funding isn’t going to make it go away. School leaders, teachers, governors and parents are fed up of being ignored and won’t stop making their voices heard.

“Only new money from the Treasury will solve the school funding crisis."

The DfE was contacted for comment.

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