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MP’s are not heeding the voice of parents. And Government is not listening to the challenges from schools and education leaders.

by Jackie Porter on 2 February, 2022

£500 cut to children in the South of England’s education – proof that levelling up is not working 
Hampshire has seen one of the worst cuts in the country to education spending per child.

Liberal Democrats demand that these cuts are reversed to solve “deprivation blind spots” in South of England, including the dreadful shortfall for Special Needs provision.

Over just three years Hampshire County Council has accumulated a debt of £53.7m on the ‘high needs block’

New figures “show this Government are not serious about  levelling up our country”

The Liberal Democrats have revealed new research undertaken by the House of Commons Library, finding real terms per child education spending is falling by as much as £500 in the South of England. 

The new analysis reveals the top 10 areas impacted in the region, as well as finding areas in the South have had the biggest cuts in the country. 

Jackie says,’Local conservative MP’s are letting down their constituents. MP’s must be receiving this in their postbag : as the county councillor, I receive casework from parents desperate for a better deal for their own children and we work together to solve its one by one.’
But either our Conservative MP’s don’t shout loud enough or their own Conservative Government isn’t listening…

Hampshire is listed as having the second greatest cut to funding. If they had received even the average for the South East, they would have received £34m more- allowing them to balance the budget . But these figures show HCC had an 11% cut which means that the Conservative council will have to dip, yet again, into the council tax reserves to manage the education and care of children. ‘

Wokingham has seen the biggest drop in real terms funding per child (£561) in the region, whilst Hampshire (£521), and Surrey (£507) also feature in the top 10 areas to see education funding slashed in recent years whilst not being included in new education levelling up fund. 

The South has by far seen the biggest education spending cuts compared to other parts of the country. 

The Liberal Democrats are demanding that all areas who have suffered cuts in education spending receive new funds. 

The party is also calling for £15 billion of catch-up funding, as was recommended by former Education Recovery Commissioner Sir Kevan Collins. They are proposing that £5 billion of this should be provided in £200 catch-up vouchers for every child, or double that amount for disadvantaged pupils, putting money into the hands of parents to spend on what their children need most.

Liberal Democrat Education spokesperson Munira Wilson MP said:“These depressing new figures show that the Conservative Government is not serious about levelling up our country. It is truly shocking that millions of children across the country have seen spending on their education slashed in recent years. 

“This Government has deprivation blindspots. They don’t recognise that inequality exists across the country and any cut to education spending will hit children hard. The schools formula doesn’t acknowledge the challenge of teaching children from deprived homes, or provide enough financial support for children with special needs. “

“Children have suffered terribly from this pandemic. The Government has let down children and parents, failing to invest properly in education catch-up.

Notes to Editor  Figures are based on Schools Block Allocation Data (House of Commons Library). The Schools Block (also known as core revenue funding for schools) is one part of the Dedicated Schools Grant (DSG), which is paid by the Government to local authorities. It excludes complex special educational needs funding, early years funding, and the pupil premium. Full data by local authority is available here
 Areas benefited from the new Government levelling up funding for education. Only Swindon and South Gloucestershire included in new funding round of those areas which saw biggest fall in spending per child  Liberal Democrat Analysis  Local authority Cuts in real terms education spend per child since 2015Wokingham£561Hampshire£521Surrey£507West Sussex£491Wiltshire£483Oxfordshire£453West Berkshire£453Bracknell Forest£447Buckinghamshire£425Windsor and Maidenhead£396
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