Cash-strapped schools consider introducing four-day week

Oct 4, 2016 by

Schools in West Sussex are considering ‘modifying school hours’ as a last-ditch attempt to cut costs

Schools in West Sussex are warning they may have no option but to cut their hours – even floating the idea of a four-day week – unless they are given emergency financial help from the government.

After years of underfunding, headteachers in every primary, secondary and special school in the county have written to parents saying all the obvious cuts to school spending have already been made. Now they are considering “modifying school hours” as a last-ditch attempt to cut costs.

School leaders in West Sussex – and other underfunded counties – were pinning their hopes on the government’s new national funding formula for schools, which was due to be introduced next year, to address historic inequities in the system. But that was delayed in the wake of the Brexit vote and now headteachers in West Sussex say they need a £20m emergency injection of funds next April to tide them over.

The mechanics behind a change to a four-day school week remain unclear, but leaders of the Worth Less? campaign in West Sussex are hoping their warnings will focus the minds of government ministers, among them schools minister Nick Gibb, who is MP for Bognor Regis and Littlehampton.

Source: Cash-strapped schools consider introducing four-day week | Education | The Guardian

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