Swindon MPs refute schools funding criticism

By Barrie Hudson - 23 November 2023

  • South Swindon MP Sir Robert Buckland and North Swindon counterpart Justin Tomlinson

    South Swindon MP Sir Robert Buckland and North Swindon counterpart Justin Tomlinson

Swindon MPs Sir Robert Buckland and Justin Tomlinson have issued a joint statement clarifying figures around schools funding.

The Labour Party, in recently-issued analysis of education funding, said Swindon schools would be worse off to the tune of £50 per pupil next year.

However the MPs, both Conservatives, describe the figure as misleading and say that core schools funding is set to rise to its highest level in history during 2024–2025.

Sir Robert Buckland and Mr Tomlinson said in their statement: “Since 2010, we have worked tirelessly to ensure that Swindon receives the best possible funding to improve education outcomes, including ending the unfair schools funding formula that was introduced by the last Labour Government, so that schools here in Swindon now receive more funding per pupil than ever before.

“The Department for Education originally published the 2024-25 National Funding Formula in July, to the usual timescale. Subsequently, the Department identified a technical error made by officials during the initial calculations of the 2024-25 National Funding Formula. Officials have worked at pace to update the NFF allocations for schools and these were published in October. 

“Schools have not yet received their 2024-25 funding – and so the correction of this error does not mean adjusting any funding that schools have already received.

“The error also has no bearing on the total amount of funding going into the schools system next year. 

“The total amount that the school sector will receive will remain unchanged at £59.6bn in 2024-25, the highest it has ever been, in real terms per pupil. 

“Core schools funding will rise to its highest level in history. Year-on-year, school funding is rising by over £3.9 billion in 2023-24, compared to 2022-23, and that comes on top of a £4 billion year-on-year cash increase last year. That is a 16% increase in just two years.”



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