From education to employment

Twelve education and parent organisations warn of looming funding crisis

liz truss

Twelve organisations representing education staff, parents, governors and trustees have today written to Prime Minister Liz Truss and Education Secretary Kit Malthouse warning of their concern over the looming education funding crisis.

The letter is signed by the Association of Colleges; Association of School and College Leaders; Community Union; GMB Union, school leaders’ union NAHT; teachers’ union NASUWT; National Education Union; National Governance Association; Parentkind; Sixth Form Colleges Association; UNISON, and Unite the Union.

Dear Prime Minister and Education Secretary

We are writing on behalf of leaders, teachers, teaching assistants, support staff, governors, trustees and parents in the vast majority of schools, trusts and colleges in England to express our dismay and concern over the looming education funding crisis. The amount of money allocated to education is not enough to cover rising costs. However, it seems that your government has decided that there will be no more money for education beyond the allocation in last autumn’s spending review – even though the decisions in that review were based on much lower inflation levels. We are alarmed at reports that your government may also be considering further ‘efficiencies’ in public spending.

The reality is that school and college spending has been cut to the bone over the past decade, there is no room for efficiencies, and a real-terms cut in funding will be catastrophic. If schools and colleges have to make further savings, this will inevitably mean reductions in teaching and support staff. This will result in larger class sizes, cuts to the curriculum and student support services, and cuts in extra-curricular provision, such as school trips and clubs. There is a very real risk of a decline in educational standards.

Your government claims to be pursuing an agenda of economic growth but we fail to see how growth can be sustainable, and how our country can look forward to a secure and

prosperous future, without sufficient investment in education. This is of critical importance to the lives of the children, young people and adult learners in our schools and colleges, and it is also of critical importance to ensuring that the nation possesses the breadth of knowledge and skills to be globally competitive and productive in the future. A failure to properly fund schools and colleges is short-sighted, short-term and short changes our pupils and students.

Yours sincerely

  • David Hughes, Chief Executive, Association of Colleges
  • Geoff Barton, General Secretary, Association of School and College Leaders
  • Roy Rickhuss, General Secretary, Community Union
  • Avril Chambers, National Officer, GMB Union
  • Paul Whiteman, General Secretary of school leaders’ union NAHT
  • Patrick Roach, General Secretary of teachers’ union NASUWT
  • Kevin Courtney and Mary Bousted, Joint General Secretaries, National Education Union Emma Knights, Chief Executive, National Governance Association
  • John Jolly, Chief Executive, Parentkind
  • Bill Watkin, Chief Executive, Sixth Form Colleges Association
  • Mike Short, National Secretary, Education, Local Government, Police & Justice, UNISON Andrew Murray, National Officer for Education, Unite the union

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