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MP attends funding crisis meeting with Head Teachers

February 10, 2017 5:44 PM

NAHT meetingSouth Lakes MP Tim Farron yesterday attended a meeting with local Head Teachers to discuss the funding crisis facing local schools. The Cumbrian branch of the National Association of Head Teachers, which organised the meeting, estimates that schools in Cumbria face a cut of £23million by 2020. Tim has bid for a parliamentary debate on this issue.

Tim attended the meeting, held in Grange-over-Sands, alongside around 30 Head Teachers and Governors from schools across Cumbria. Tim gave a speech at the meeting, and talked about the danger posed by such drastic cuts, which the NAHT estimates could see 625 Cumbrian teachers cut. The cuts have come about due to changes brought in by the government which have seen schools become liable for a host of extra costs.

Tim has written to the Education Minister Justine Greening MP, to ask her whether the government will make up the funding shortfall and if not how she suggests schools should deal with this funding gap.

In addition to this, Tim has also bid for a debate in parliament on schools funding, and has requested a meeting with the Schools Minister.

Tim said: "Cutting the equivalent of £383 per pupil per year from schools in Cumbria will be disastrous. This is the equivalent of 625 teachers across our county. There is no way that this can be done without massively harming the life chances of children across our county. It would mean more students per class and less attention per pupil. The government must look at the effects of what it is doing and think again.

"I have bid for a parliamentary debate on this issue, so I can pass on to the Minister the concerns of local teachers and urge the government to reconsider. It's utterly wrong to play with children's life chances in this way.

"My thanks go to the Cumbria NAHT branch for organising this meeting, and to all those who attended. For the sakes of the young people who are currently going through our education system, I hope the government will reconsider what it is doing."