WARRINGTON Borough Council is to be asked to send an urgent plea to the Government over its proposed changes to school funding which will result in the town’s schools receiving 67 per cent less than those in the best funded parts of the country.
The request comes in a motion by two councillors to be put to the council on Monday next week.
Cllr Rebecca Knowles (pictured above) and Cllr Cathy Mitchell say funding per pupil in Warrington schools will be £439 less than the national average.
They express dismay that Warrington – which has for many years been one of the lowest funded authorities in
the country – will sink even lower to the 141st out of 150 authorities.
The new proposals do nothing to address the unfairness of the current system that they are designed to replace, the two councillors claim.
They will ask the council to urge the Government to look again at the proposals and, in particular, to reconsider in detail the weightings given to the various elements within it to ensure that it delivers a more equitable outcome for Warrington children.
In addition, they note that the impact of the Government freeze on school budgets will see a real terms reduction of eight per cent from their flat cash settlement (according to the National Audit Office) bearing in mind the increases in their costs.
This means that on top of the impact proposed funding changes, Warrington schools will experience across the board reductions, and that even potential ‘gainers’ from formula changes will still lose overall.
Cllr Knowles and Cllr Mitchell say they are extremely concerned at the impact the changes will have on the education of children in Warrington and the damage it will cause to schools.
They call upon the Secretary of State for Education to insist that Warrington schools are funded to a level where they can operate efficiently.
They will ask that both Warrington MP’s – David Mowat and Helen Jones, be asked to support the council resolution.