• Thu. May 30th, 2024

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REDCAR & Cleveland Borough Council’s cabinet has approved the school funding formula recently agreed at the Schools Forum meeting which protects budgets.

A minimum funding guarantee for all schools is set by the government meaning that no school will have its budget reduced by more than 1.5% even if the number of pupils at the school has declined.

Other schools will see an increase in their budget as the cabinet has agreed to recommendations to provide more funding for those pupils currently assessed as being just above the ‘most disadvantaged’ threshold.

The councillors agreed to make changes to the Income Deprivation Affecting Children Index banding amounts meaning that additional funding will go to children who are likely to be just above the threshold for Pupil Premium funding but are still disadvantaged. This ensures funding is targeted at our most vulnerable learners.

Extra funding levels first agreed in 2015 for schools teaching Looked After Children to ensure that every pupil can achieve the best results possible will be maintained.

For schools across the borough, per-pupil funding has been adjusted for the 2017/18 academic year, with the funding level per primary school pupil now set at £2,768 and secondary school pupils set at £4,440, an increase of £13 for primary and a decrease of £10 for secondary compared to last year.

This has been brought about by the changing pupil numbers in each key stage and to maintain the 1:29 funding ratio between primary and secondary schools. This means that for every £1 spent in primary school, £1.29 is spent in secondary schools. However, the number of secondary school pupils has declined in the past year which means that some schools will see a small decrease in their budget.

Of the 54 schools in the borough, 23 have had a budget increase up to 1.55% with the remaining 31 schools having their budget reduced by no more than 1.5% based on pupil numbers. It is hoped these small changes to school budgets will see money sent to where it is needed without other schools finding themselves struggling with a lack of funding.

Councillor Craig Hannaway, Cabinet Member for Children, said: “We are pleased to be able to work with the schools across our borough to come to a funding arrangement that will benefit pupils learning across the borough. Even with the need to save money hopefully this formula will see our secondary schools continue to improve and see our primary schools continue to excel.”