Budget cuts in English schools resulting in redundancy, survey finds

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30th November 2015 13:19 - Education

A recent survey, which was published by the Association of School and College Leaders and law firm Browne Jacobson, has discovered that more than a 50 per cent of schools are willing to make cuts in the number of staff within their institution, as a way to decrease the mounting pressures brought on by budget decisions.

The survey revealed that 55 per cent of school leaders said that they were looking to reduce the total level of staffing in the next 12 months. Of that per centage, 75 per cent said that they would be looking to decrease the number of teaching positions. As well as this, 60 per cent of schools said they would cut staffing levels by up to 5 per cent, with 25 per cent saying they would be cutting between 6 per cent - 10 per cent of staff in the next year.

The survey also discovered that fewer than 10 per cent of senior leaders were positive about the government's policies and more than 90 per cent said they were dissatisfied with how schools are funded (92 per cent).

The research comes in the wake of revelations that the Department for Education has failed to hit its recruitment target for teachers for the fourth year in a row – although the amount of primary school teachers required was met. However, only four fifths (82 per cent) of the forecast number of secondary school places have been filled, despite a rise in the number of recruits. One positive element for the DfE was that their approach of offering generous bursaries to graduates has been somewhat successful, with the number of physics teachers entering the profession rising.

Lucy Powell, the shadow Education secretary, said:

“The government has left schools struggling against falling applications in key subject areas like maths and science, and the highest number of teachers leaving the profession since records began.”

The coming spending review is expected to include provision for a new schools funding initiative, called ‘Fairer Funding’. However, it is thought that this is unlikely to have an impact until September 2017.

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