Almost 6,000 school staff lost in 2017 as education cuts bite

Almost 6,000 school staff lost their jobs in 2017 as the Conservative Government’s education cuts began to bite, according to GMB Union

New figures released today also show nearly 3,000 teaching assistant lost their jobs last year – the first drop since records began.

In total 5,800 school support staff posts were cut last year – a reduction of 1.1 per cent of the workforce.

And 2,800 teaching assistants lost their jobs. This was the first time that the number of teaching assistants has fallen since comparable records began.

The worst affected group of support staff workers was technicians. Five per cent of jobs were lost between 2016 and 2017.

Teacher numbers also fell for the first time since 2011.

Meanwhile an GMB investigation recently revealed up to 2.6 million children could lose out on free school meals by 2022.

Rehana Azam, GMB National Secretary, said: “Our children’s education is in a terriblesituation thanks to nearly a decade of Conservative cuts.

“School support staff, including teaching assistants, are too often seen as a soft target by desperate schools having to claw back cash wherever they can,.

But these cuts have a devastating impact on our school – because support staff are the hidden professionals of the education system.

“Without them teachers are being left with a completely unmanageable workload, and schools can’t function if buildings can’t be secured and children can’t be fed.

“Ministers need to stop denying that school budgets are being cut – the reality is in front of us.”

2016 2017 Change # Change %
Teaching assistants 265.6 262.8 -2.8 -1.1%
Administrative staff 90.2 89.5 -0.7 -0.8%
Technicians 22.9 21.8 -1.1 -4.8%
Other Support Staff 33.6 34.0 0.4 1.2%
Auxiliary staff 88.3 87.1 -1.2 -1.4%
Headcount of third party support staff 47.8 47.4 -0.4 -0.8%
Total 548.4 542.6 -5.8 -1.1%

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