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School funding to increase by £10 billion
EB News: 25/11/2015 - 15:57
Amongst his statements, Osborne declared that in addition to the 5,000 academies across the UK, the option for sixth forms to become academies, ’so they no longer have to pay VAT’, will be offered.
Osborne said that there will be 500 new free schools and university technical colleges, while threatening that councils running schools will become a thing of the past.
Despite numerous rumours leading up to the announcement, Osborne also reassured schools and parents by stating that free school meals and pupil premium will be maintained.
Furthermore, Osborne addressed the issue of a fairer funding system, announcing that the arbitrary schools funding system will be replaced. He said the government would phase out the ‘unfair’ school funding system which has ‘systematically underfunding schools in whole swathes of the country’.
A new National Funding Formula is expected to be introduced in 2017, while in the mean time, Education Secretary Nicky Morgan is expected to launch a consultation regarding the new formula, early next year.
Speaking about the education funding formula, Osborne labelled it ‘perverse'. He added ‘it cannot be right’ if a child receives £3,000 less than another child even though they are in the same circumstances.
In addition, the Chancellor announced that part-time students are now liable to receive maintenance loans, and that the National Citizen Service will be expanded so that by the end of the decade, there will be places for 300,000 students.
Regarding early years education, Osborne promised an increase in free childcare, including a new 30 hour free childcare subsidy for parents of three and four-year-olds which will be limited to those working more than 16 hours a week.