CamdenNewJournal

The independent London newspaper

Back our demands for more school funding

06 June, 2019

• THE Tory government have had a clear policy of holding back funding from Camden schools and many others in inner London boroughs since the 2015 general election.

They have increased the “per-pupil” funding by only 0.5 per cent over the last few years for inflation. This is causing an intolerable strain on Camden school budgets.

For example, after nine years of 0 per cent or 1 per cent pay rises, school support staff on the very lowest rates of pay in our schools received a living pay rise in 2018 and 2019.

This increase is a small portion of school budgets but something the government have refused to fund. And it is often school support staff posts that are cut first.

When schools make this decision they know they are not cutting luxuries. How can schools cope with an epidemic of mental health issues when they have no learning mentor?

How do they support children with increasingly more complex special educational needs when they have to cut specialist teaching assistants?

How do they secure premises and the expensive technology used in classrooms out of hours when they are forced to cut live-in schoolkeepers?

Tory ministers say they are spending more than ever on schools, if they spent a penny more each year that would be true but dishonest.

They have stopped spending what is needed to ensure our great schools in Camden can meet the all-round needs of all our children.

Our schools are still doing their best and will continue to remain great schools, but that is getting harder without the money needed to pay staff.

The time is fast approaching when governors will have to choose between meeting the government’s funding rules or breaking ranks.

Meeting the needs of our children with staff facing an increasingly intolerable workload is not a viable option.

Unison members, teaching trade unions, teachers, parents, children and all in the school community, are organising protests this term to back our demands for more school funding. Get in touch, get involved.

HUGO PIERRE
Camden Unison
Schools Convener

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