If every child is to receive an education that they deserve, then school funding needs to be boosted by £5.7 billion, one union says.
In a report published by the Association of School and College Leaders (ASCL), the union warns that England’s primary and secondary schools will need £40.2 billion in funding in 2019/20.
However, they will only receive £34.5 billion.
The union says it worked out its figures by calculating how many teachers and support staff are necessary to support the number of students in the school system next year.
In their survey of secondary school headteachers, around half said that they have made significant budget cuts over the last three years, and 60% say the cuts were ‘severe’.
Make deeper cuts unless government funding improves
The union’s president, Richard Sherriff, says that schools will be facing insolvency or will need to make deeper cuts unless government funding improves.
He said: “We’ve analysed the costs for providing the education that society expects and their children deserve and it’s not unrealistic or excessive.
“On the current trajectory, headteachers will either have to make more cuts to the curriculum and the support given to pupils or face insolvency. That’s not a scenario that is acceptable to anyone, the government, community, parents or schools.”
A Department for Education spokesman said the government has introduced a range of support for ‘helping schools reduce their costs and gain the best value from resources’.
The spokesman added that school funding is being considered as part of the government’s spending review and the Department is working closely with the Treasury in the process which will be concluded in the autumn.
Survey looking at the issue of pupil poverty
Meanwhile, the ASCL has also published a survey looking at the issue of pupil poverty and the impact it has on schools.
The publication reveals that hundreds of secondary schools are reporting a rising tide of pupil poverty in England and Wales.
The survey has been published ahead of the union’s conference in Birmingham and 96% of union members said that pupil poverty has increased in recent years.
This has led to schools seeing:
91% of headteachers providing clothing for pupils
75% say they’ve put on breakfast clubs
71% now provide sanitary products
47% are washing clothes for their pupils
43% are providing food parcels or food banks for their pupils and families.