Cuts. Funding. Funding crisis.

Cuts. Funding. Funding crisis. You only have to type this in a search engine and you would be inundated with articles, facts and figures.

It has been big news that UK schools will now be facing the biggest budget cuts since the 1990’s. But behind the headlines there are a huge number of schools in the UK are already suffering, with only more financial hardship on the horizon.

St John’s Primary School in Sussex is one of the schools to feel the wrath of these reduced school budgets and was recently the subject of a BBC news article. This school felt that their only option was to ask parents for donations of various ‘essentials’ including toilet rolls, glue sticks and tissues as the school simply did not have the funds for these basic essentials. One parent told the BBC: “This is the first time in seven years that they are asking for something else to be given to the school.”

The article can be found here

Huge and detrimental cuts have to be made by some schools in regard to staffing. Even though the UK has been struggling to recruit much needed teachers recently, schools now have to let vital members of staff go because they can no longer afford to pay them. One head teacher spoke to Canary: “Just to come in on budget this year, I’ve laid off or not replaced: my librarian, a receptionist, my counsellor, a premises manager, an attendance officer, a head of year and three teachers.” These are vital members of staff that a school needs to function well, and budget cuts mean that they are being sacrificed, at a time when they are needed most.

The article can be found here

A recent survey for the Sutton Trust brought to light some revealing statistics on how schools are coping with these cuts. 49% of primary schools and 57% of secondary schools have cut back on TA’s while 18% of primaries and 54% of secondaries have cut back on teaching staff. The profession has been attracting less and less people due to low pay and huge workload. Now, some schools cannot even afford the teachers they already have.

Alongside this, outings have been reduced and IT equipment has been cut back in 30% of primaries and 32% of secondaries.

Another worrying statistic from this survey shows that 32% of primary and 27% of secondary schools are using money that is meant to fund poorer pupils to plug gaps elsewhere in the school’s budget.

Teresa May is still sticking to her word on this saying: “We have protected the schools budget. We now see more teachers in our schools. We see more teachers with first class degrees in our schools… We believe in diversity in education and choice for parents.”

But to many schools they don’t see a protected budget and it is an increasing issue.

This is a very real reality for some schools and they fear that with such limited budgets, they will not be able to deliver a quality education to every child.