Maria Caulfield MP has once again raised in Parliament the issue of funding for local schools, questioning the Schools Minister on funding problems around accepting new pupils part way through the year.
At present per pupil funding is decided based on the number of pupils in each school on a particular date, the census date. If a school takes on a new pupil after this date they will not receive funding during that year for the pupil, costing schools in Lewes around £4,000 per pupil.
Maria Caulfield MP asked the Minister “If a school receives a pupil after the census cut-off date, it does not receive the per-pupil funding for the rest of that financial year. This is costing schools in my Lewes constituency around £4,000 per pupil. What is the Minister going to do to look again at the issue of the census cut-off date?”
Responding the Schools Minister said “Lagged funding, of course, has an advantage in providing stability for the school system. Particularly where pupil numbers fall, for example, a school will know that it will not see an immediate drop in its funding. We keep the growth factor funding issue under review for those schools that are experiencing exceptionally high increases in pupil numbers, and we also keep this factor of the national funding formula under review.”
Maria Caulfield MP said “Whilst it is good that schools losing a pupil will not see a sudden drop in funding, those schools gaining pupils have to make do without funding for new pupils which needs to be addressed. I will continue to raise the issue of funding for schools in the Lewes constituency locally and in Westminster.”
A clip of Maria Caulfield MP raising the issue can be found at https://parliamentlive.tv/event/index/c1472eb7-f131-4b30-a3a6-16105a5386e8?in=15:28:33&out=15:29:18