The education of all our children in Redditch has always been and remains a priority for me, which is why I have to date visited nearly every school in Redditch – some more than once – and held detailed discussions with head teachers and staff on this issue. I am well aware of the challenges facing our excellent schools, and as well as tackling funding and resources.

The best way I believe in achieving change and securing more funding for schools in Redditch is to meet with the Chancellor, Treasury and Education Ministers to discuss the historic underfunding of our schools and to lobby them for more funding. This is what I have done, this is what I am doing ahead of the Spending Review.

 

86%

of children attend schools rated good or outstanding.

It is important that we also recognise more of our children are getting a good education under this Government. In 2010, Oftsed’s Annual Report for Education and Skills showed 67% of primary schools and 59% of secondary schools were judged to be good or outstanding in Worcestershire. Ofsted’s 2017 report found 88% primary schools and 96% of secondary schools are now rated as good or outstanding in the county.

6,357

school places have been created in Worcestershire since 2010.

Over the two years 2018/19 and 2019/20, per-pupil funding in Worcestershire is going up by £172 (4% compared to the national average of 3.2%) and when changes in pupil numbers are taken into account, total funding rises by £18.7 million (up 6.2% compared to 2017/18).

How much do our schools receive?

In 2019/20, the National Funding Formula allocates Worcestershire:

  • £3,872 per primary pupil. For a class of 26 (the average primary class size in Worcestershire) this equates to £102,459.
  • £4,975 per secondary pupil. For the same class of 26 pupils, this equates to £131,641.
  • An additional £9.2million of funding through the growth, premises and mobility factors of the formula, which are not distributed on a per pupil basis.
  • On top of NFF, Worcestershire will recieve £19.4 million in Pupil Premium funding to support the 16,901 pupils eligible for Pupil Premium.

We know from independent studies that the UK is a high spender on state primary and secondary education by international standards and also that real spending per pupil is half as much again higher than it was in 2000.

I’ve long said schools in Worcestershire have been historically underfunded. The new, fairer National Funding Formula replaces the previous, unfair and out-of-date funding system that saw Worcestershire schools near the bottom of the funding pile for many years.

Does more need to be done to address these historical school funding injustices, yes, and I’ll be continuing my conversations with the Department for Education and the Treasury ahead of the Spending Review. I want to see more funding for schools in Redditch in that review.