Crisis meetings over lack of school cash in Walsall
Emergency meetings have been called for parents across a Black Country borough to confront a funding crisis that unions claim threatens to overwhelm some schools.
The National Union for Teachers (NUT) has called the meetings, all to take place in the next 10 days, with concerns schools in Walsall will lose hundreds of pounds worth of funding per pupil.
The NUT also fears dozens of teaching jobs across the borough could also be at risk. The concerns have been sparked as the government looks to change its schools funding formula.
In Brownhills, where the first meeting is tomorrow in the Memorial Hall, at 2.15pm, the NUT claims schools are facing the potential loss of between £421 and £728 per pupil.
The union says the changes will lead to the possible loss of up to 22 teachers in the next three years – despite the area seeing an increase in pupil numbers.
In Willenhall, where two meetings will take place at Short Heath Junior School on Tuesday, May 23, at 4pm and 5.30pm, eight schools, including Willenhall E-ACT Academy, which was recently rated inadequate by Ofsted, face losses of between £301 and £660 per pupil.
More than 30 teaching jobs are at risk, according to the union.
A meeting in Darlaston on May 25, at 2pm, takes place at the Old Church School.
The NUT says seven of the town’s schools could lose between £393 and £646 funding per pupil, while 32 jobs could also be at risk.
Russ Bragger, NUT general secretary for the NUT in Walsall, said: “This pattern of deprivation and the threat it poses to effective educational provision is repeated in other areas of the three Walsall parliamentary constituencies and so these meetings come at a critical time for the Government as the General Election cannot help but focus attention on education.
Figures from that source paint a grim picture for Walsall which is already struggling with provision and support.”
The department for education has previously said its proposed new funding formula will end ‘the historic unfairness in areas of England funded disproportionately to others’.