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School budget pressures

School budget pressures

School budget pressures and their impact can be complex to understand and can change depending on a range of factors. The pressures can affect curriculum delivery to building repairs. A recent study by ‘The Institute of Fiscal Studies’ has highlighted some facts as well as shortfalls. Despite pressures, the government have continued to maintain their goals which include reducing the attainment gap and increasing pupil attainment by 2030. However, did you know that there is a predicted shortfall in funding to meet government academic targets? To help you understand the pressures and shortfalls, we have summarised some main points in our 10 facts guide.

So what are the financial pressures and why is it felt that there is not enough funding to meet targets?

Here are 10 facts to help you understand school budget pressures.
  1. The Institute of Fiscal Studies estimated that spend per pupil in 2024-25 is expected to be 3% lower than in 2010.
  2. Education for 16+ year olds has been predicted to also be worse off by IFS analysis. It is predicted that college funding per pupil in 2024-25 will be 10% below 2010-11 levels.
  3. IFS predicts school sixth form to be most worse off with a 23% spend reduction per pupil in 2024-25, compared to 2010-11.
  4. The announcement of the teacher pay award on the last day of term was welcomed within the sector.
  5. The teacher pay-award received no additional funding from government and this means there is an added unplanned wage bill for every school.
  6. The steep rise in inflation has added to pressures, particularly the vast increase in energy bills of 200% which is still climbing.
  7. The Department of Education has increased school budgets in the current financial year by £4bn.
  8. In 2024/5, school budgets are set to increase by £7bn.
  9. The government’s recent schools’ white paper set a target that 90% of primary pupils should achieve the expected standard in reading, writing and maths by 2030.
  10. Research and sector leaders feel the government’s additional funding will help to cover the cost of inflation, however, it is felt not to be enough and could result in teaching cuts. It does not address the funding needed to meet pupil attainment targets.

To find out more 

If you are interested in learning more about the attainment gap, you may wish to read more. The IFS article “Lack of progress on closing educational inequalities disadvantaging millions throughout life’ can be viewed by clicking  here

If you want to know more about Operam Education Group’s Tutoring programme to address the attainment gap, please click here

Want to know more about managing school budgets from someone who is experiencing the current challenges?

Our new podcast ‘Inspirational Education Leaders’ starts with an interview with Sarah North. Sarah is currently Co-CEO at The Oak Trust and Executive Headteacher at North Chadderton School, Oldham. Here, she discusses financial pressures amongst other issues and says ” no-one prepares you for the finance side.”  Sarah goes on to talk about her leadership journey and current challenges. You can listen to the podcast by clicking here or by searching on podcast platforms.

‘Inspirational Education Leaders’ is Operam Education Group’s original podcast series that includes an  interview with a current leader in education. Each episode hears from an experienced leader to explore their journey, challenges, and thoughts on current issues. Look out for a new episode at the beginning of each month.