School spending per student in England will remain lower than it was in 2010 after a decade of cuts in the education budget, new research has shown.
Boris Johnson’s government has pledged an additional £ 7.1 billion for schools in England over the 2022-2023 period – but it will not reverse a cut in real spending per student over the past decade, according to the Institute of Fiscal Studies (IFS ).
Total school spending per student in England was just over £ 6,500 in the last full data year 2019-20, about 9 percent lower in real terms than the high of £ 7,200 in 2009-10, which means spending will remain at 1 percent less than ten years ago after taking inflation into account.
The think tank also said disadvantaged students in the poorest parts of England have suffered the biggest cuts during the decade of austerity, and their research shows they are now receiving the smallest increase in additional spending.
Between 2017–18 and 2022–23, budget allocations for the most privileged schools will increase by 8 to 9 percent in real terms, compared with just 5 percent for the most disadvantaged schools.
Labor said conservative cuts had “hammered” school budgets for the past decade and accused the government of “robbing children of their chances.”
The opposition urged ministers to invest more in post-Covid post-Covid funding as House of Commons library data showed the UK overtook most European countries during the time schools were closed during the pandemic.
Luke Sibieta, research fellow at IFS, said the “big pressure” on school spending per student in England was the greatest in at least 40 years.
“This will make it all the more difficult for schools to cope with the huge challenge of helping students catch up on lost learning, along with everything else they have to do,” he said.
The IFS expert added, “Schools that serve disadvantaged communities face the greatest challenges. They faced the biggest cuts until 2019 and are now receiving the smallest increases. This pattern contradicts the government’s goal of leveling poorer parts of the country. “
Josh Hillman, director of education for the Nuffield Foundation, the nonprofit that commissioned the study, added: “It is critical that schools in deprived areas receive adequate and targeted funding so that they can help fill the deprivation gap close and ensure all children can reach their full potential. “
Kate Green, secretary for shadow formation, said the IFS report shows how “conservative cuts have hammered school budgets over the past decade”.
The Labor Frontbencher added, “The opportunities for children have been deprived as class sizes have risen to record levels and enriching extracurricular activities have been reduced.”
Since the beginning of last year, children in the UK have been out of school almost half (44 percent) of the days – school closings longer than in any other European country except Italy.
The shadow education secretary said the long hours students spent outside of school were in part due to the failure of Education Secretary Gavin Williamson.
“Conservatives’ failure to respond to the Covid crisis has kept children away from class for much longer than their European counterparts,” Ms. Green said, urging the government to ensure adequate ventilation to prevent Covid outbreaks this fall can be minimized.
“At the start of the new school year, Gavin Williamson is again burying his head in the sand, ignoring advice from scientific experts and risking creating a climate of chaos for schools if Covid rates rise,” she added.
A spokesman for the Ministry of Education (DfE) said the $ 7.1 billion increase in funding for schools
The DfE added: “In the next year, the funding will increase by a total of 3.2 percent compared to 2021-22 and by 2.8 percent per student. The National Funding Formula continues to distribute this fairly based on the needs of the schools and their student cohorts. “