Schools can’t invest due to Government fund failure’

SCHOOLS in Cambridgeshire are unable to invest more in teaching and information technology or reduce class sizes because of inadequate Government funding, a spokesman for Cambridgeshire County Council said on Monday. Figures released by the Government sho

SCHOOLS in Cambridgeshire are unable to invest more in teaching and information technology or reduce class sizes because of inadequate Government funding, a spokesman for Cambridgeshire County Council said on Monday.

Figures released by the Government show that pupils in Cambridgeshire receive the lowest funding in the East of England.

Cambridgeshire County Council receives £3,980 per pupil last year. This compares with pupils in Suffolk who received £100 more and those across the border in Essex where the figure is £4,180 per pupil, Hertfordshire, £4,300 and Peterborough pupils who get most of all with £4,560 per pupil.

The Government's strategy is to give the most funding to deprived areas and it ranks Cambridgeshire as the ninth least deprived county.

However, if Cambridgeshire received the same level of funding per pupil as Peterborough, it would have an extra £47million to spend. This could pay for 1,211 teachers - or five extra teachers per school.

A spokesman for the county council told The Hunts Post: "Despite constant lobbying, the Government repeatedly fails to recognise Cambridgeshire's needs. We have areas of extreme deprivation. What the Government's inadequate funding means is that Cambridgeshire's schools are unable to deliver beyond the national curriculum. We would love to invest more in ICT and bringing down pupil-teacher ratios, but are unable to."

Most Read

Schools get most of their funding from the Government's dedicated schools grant. Cambridgeshire received £283million this year. Of that, 87 per went into the classroom. The rest pays for educational needs such as pupil support.

The figures, announced by Parliamentary Under-secretary of State for Schools, Lord Adonis, include the dedicated schools grant, the school standards grant, the Standards Fund and cash from the Learning and Skills Council.

Cambridgeshire is 129th out of 149 local authorities for funding per pupil. Its 6.3 per cent increase in funding last year was the ninth lowest because the county is reckoned to be less needy that other areas.

Become a Supporter

This newspaper has been a central part of community life for many years. Our industry faces testing times, which is why we're asking for your support. Every contribution will help us continue to produce local journalism that makes a measurable difference to our community.

Become a Supporter