Daniel Yates: City’s schools should not face more damaging cuts

Cllr Daniel Yates will lead Labour into the 2019 council elections
Cllr Daniel Yates will lead Labour into the 2019 council elections

T his week the good news about avoiding compulsory redundancies at Moulsecoomb School was announced, with well-deserved praise for all those involved in the campaign.

However government cuts to education funding are going to increasingly hit schools across the city and I’m determined to work collaboratively across the city to prevent the worst impacts of this, and implore government for better funding for our schools. Education is vital, and yet the Conservative government is reducing funding for schools in real-terms. It is estimated that nationally schools will suffer an approximate four per cent real-terms cut in funding per pupil by 2020, and for us that means an estimated £173 less per pupil funding for our local schools. So we are backing our local Save our Schools campaign, which is drawing attention to how much our schools are being affected by funding cuts.

I as Leader of the Council, and Cllr Daniel Chapman as Lead Member for Schools, will now be writing to the Secretary of State on behalf of the city’s young people. We will be saying how concerned we are about the lack of funding for schools in Brighton and Hove, and that we are seeing first-hand the damage that inadequate funding is inflicting on our local schools. All staff in our schools continue to do amazing work, despite the huge financial pressures they are facing, but it is now a struggle to make ends meet for many schools. We don’t want schools to have to look at cuts to the frontline, but this is becoming the harsh reality.

We will be asking the Secretary of State to make strong representations to the Chancellor before the Spending Review for more funding for schools, so that the decline in funding in real-terms can be reversed.

We will be speaking up for teachers, support staff, governors, parents, carers, children and young people in our city, and asking the Secretary of State to take the action that is needed. Without better funding, there will be more damaging cuts. With better funding, schools will have the security they need to support the aspirations of young people, as well as to ensure all children with additional needs get the support they deserve.