Schools’ hidden funding crisis: teachers take drastic action as cuts hit hard

Apr 28, 2015 by

teachers

The big issue Each day this week we are looking at the key election battleground issues. With education facing a 12% cut in real terms, subjects are being axed, class sizes rising and job losses loom – but the parties are failing to address it

Dan McAllister is a teacher at a secondary school in South Yorkshire. This is not his real name, because he is worried about the implications for his job if he talks to the Guardian about the financial crisis facing his school. Before Easter, he and his colleagues were summoned to a staff meeting to be told that their oversubscribed academy, rated outstanding by Ofsted, was facing a budget shortfall of £750,000 over the next three years.

The staff gathered that day were horrified. “We were expecting some of it,” McAllister said, “but it was absolutely massive!” They were warned that as many as 10 jobs would have to go to help make the necessary savings, and the harsh reality of the difficulties that lay ahead for them personally began to sink in.

“People are frightened,” he said. “They don’t want to lose their jobs. And schools are desperately frightened – if their reputation goes down, parents will choose to go elsewhere.”

As the general election campaign got under way, schools across the country were busy signing off their 2015 budgets, involving some of the most shocking cuts seen in years. The three major parties have given slightly different versions of a commitment to protect education spending, but each pledge has its own caveat that will result in real-term cuts of up to 12%, a fact that none of the parties are talking about ahead of the election.

Source: Schools’ hidden funding crisis: teachers take drastic action as cuts hit hard | Education | The Guardian

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