Analysis: school funding - Budget 2020Date: 29.04.2020
Possibly irrelevant, given the dramatic change to the global economy, the 2020 budget does at least give a hint at the government’s priorities for education over the next five years. This from the EPI:
Arguably, the government has already signalled its commitment to schools. Last September it announced an additional £7.1bn for schools over the next three years. Much to the government’s likely frustration, that announcement hasn’t, however, stemmed the debate about school funding. Indeed, the most recent intervention has come from Ofsted, where the Chief Inspector has suggested that funding pressures are causing some schools to narrow their curriculum offer.
But what is the reality for schools? Do schools have “enough money”. The reality is that this is an unanswerable question because there is no clear definition about what schools should be delivering. Even if there were, being able to cost that would be complex, inaccurate and almost certainly differ depending on the demographics and needs of pupils, the experience of teachers and the location of the school.
So while we can’t say whether schools have enough money, we can look at the trends in both how much money they’ve been given and how they have used that money. And that’s exactly what we have been doing in EPI over the past year. Using data published by the Department for Education, we have analysed trends in school income and expenditure to try and understand better how school funding is distributed, how schools are spending their money and how this varies between different types of schools and over time.