Barnet Tories refuse to lobby against funding cuts to 100 Barnet schools

Barnet's Conservative councillors have refused to write to the Government opposing cuts to 100 Barnet schools that are due to take effect next year as a result of the new National Funding Formula.

A petition with over 2,000 signatures, started by the Barnet Labour Group and calling for Barnet Council to lobby to ensure no school loses funding under the new formula, was presented to last week's Children, Education, Libraries & Safeguarding Committee (CELS) by local parent and school governor Lisa Pate (15 November).

The Conservative councillors voted against Labour's motion that they should add their political weight to the campaign by writing to the Government before next week's Budget announcement. The Tory Chair of the CELS committee has previously said that the funding formula was "fair".

Labour councillors managed to get agreement that a report would come back to the Committee in January with details of the lobbying efforts by London Councils on behalf of all London Boroughs.

Barnet Council has written to school governors advising that 100 out of 115 Barnet schools will face cuts from next year. The cuts could result in larger class sizes, loss of teaching and support staff, less support for children and young people, fewer subject choices, and fewer resources and out of school activities.

Labour's CELS Spokesperson, Cllr Pauline Coakley Webb said: 

“It's shameful that the Barnet Tories will not put political pressure on the Government against these school funding cuts by writing to them formally.

"Some of our schools are already struggling financially and are having to ask parents for money.

"The Secretary of State for Education promised that no school would lose money under the new National Funding Formula, but one hundred schools in Barnet will lose funding next year.”

Ends.

Notes:

  1. A link to the online Barnet Labour Group petition: http://www.barnetlabour.org.uk/fairer_funding_for_barnet_s_schools
  2. A link to the CELS agenda and reports (See Agenda Item 7): http://barnet.moderngov.co.uk/ieListDocuments.aspx?CId=697&MId=8694&Ver=4 
For more information contact: cllr.p.coakleywebb@barnet.gov.uk
To contact the Barnet Labour Group: 020 8359 2568
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