Oxfordshire has long been one of the lowest funded education authorities in England, and Nicola has been calling for fairer schools funding to address disparities in our schooling system. The Government has protected the core schools budget in real terms since 2010, and the introduction of the new funding formula does mean that Oxfordshire will gain £3.95 million in schools funding by 2019- 20. However, some schools have expressed their concerns to Nicola that running costs and other issues mean they face significant financial challenges even with the new, fairer, settlement.
Nicola visited Wolvercote Primary School in North Oxford to tour the school and meet with teachers and school Governors to discuss funding issues. As with many other local schools, Wolvercote will be taking in a higher number of pupils and staff rightly want to ensure the school is able to meet the needs of all of its students and continue to provide high quality education.
Nicola is making representations to the Schools Minister, Nick Gibb MP, on behalf of schools in her constituency as the Government continues to consult with schools on the weighting within the formula and its implementation. Nicola is also part of the F40 Campaign Group who are liaising with Ministers to ensure due consideration is given to the amount invested in education funding and the cost pressures facing all shoes.
Nicola says: Wolvercote Primary is doing a great job providing a first class school experience for its pupils, and I’ll continue to represent them as the Government finalises the new schools funding formula making sure schools make the best use of their resources and manage cost pressures.
Ministers have protected our core schools budget since 2010 and that means we are able now to look at increasing funding and addressing disparities, and I very much welcome that Oxfordshire as a whole will gain from the proposals. I have always said its essential we support lesser funded schools and I have written directly to the Schools Minister.