Hardest hit schools facing financial cliff edge as £1 billion set aside for grammars

Britain’s hardest hit schools are facing a financial cliff edge despite the Prime Minister being able to find £1 billion for her pet grammar schools scheme.

The government’s ‘flawed’ new funding formula will see the hardest hit schools facing a “financial cliff edge” in 2020, according to a new study.

A report by the Institute for Fiscal Studies (IFS) suggests 1,000 schools will be forced to take a massive hit of seven per cent per pupil when ‘transitional protections’ run out.

Every school in the country faces brutal cuts under the current plan – with £74,000 set to be slashed off primary school budgets on average while secondaries stand to lose £291,000.

Protections are in place to ensure no school should see a cash terms cut of more than three per cent, or  six per cent in real-terms, before 2019-20.

However when even these protections end, five per cent of schools – an estimated 1,000 – will then have to make huge savings of more than seven per cent to stay in line with the new formula.

GMB, the union for schools support staff, says these savage cuts are particularly divisive at a time when Theresa May has earmarked £1 billion for her Grammar schools vanity project – as exposed by GMB.

Sharon Wilde, GMB National Officer for Schools, said: “As if every single school facing cuts from this flawed funding formula wasn’t bad enough, we now find out those hardest hit will be speeding towards a financial cliff edge.

“These so-called ‘transitional protections’ are so flimsy that they are barely worth the name.

“Pupils, parents – and the staff who support them – are being exposed to a brutal attack on their resources.

“GMB members – the hidden professionals in our schools’ forgotten army of support staff – will be in the firing line as these cuts begin to bite.

“Justine Greening is creating a ticking time bomb – a lost generation of children whose future will be snatched away by ill-conceived ideas of austerity.

“Yet despite this funding crisis, the Prime Minister can still find £1 billion for her pet grammar schools project.”

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