As Portsmouth schools face further cash slash, MP asks Secretary of State: What more is left to cut?
Funding per-pupil will fall by £242 between 2016-20, with class sizes rising and staff numbers falling
Today in the House of Commons, MP for Portsmouth South, Stephen Morgan, once again challenged the Secretary of State for Education on school cuts in the city.
Mr Morgan asked Damian Hinds, ‘can the Secretary of State tell us where Portsmouth should make savings, as they are already having to do – should they cut teachers? Increase class sizes further? Shorten the school day?’ The Portsmouth MP told the Conservative front bench ‘parents and teachers in my constituency deserve better’.
This is the latest development in Mr Morgan’s campaign for fairer funding for city schools and this weekend he met with local teachers to discuss their concerns, having visited three city schools the day before.
The MP previously raised the issue of school funding directly with the Prime Minister, following several local cases involving teachers paying for basic supplies and pupil’s school meals from their own wages.
New research by the school cuts coalition of unions (NEU, NAHT, ASCL, UNISON, GMB and Unite) shows that 75% of secondary and 56% of primary schools in Portsmouth have seen class sizes increase since 2014. At the same time, they are set to lose over £3million in funding by 2019/20.
Stephen Morgan MP said:
‘Schools in Portsmouth have been doing all they can to shield their pupils from the damage caused by the Government’s decision to cut £2.8 billion from school budgets since 2015. But the lack of investment is really starting to bite.
‘Our city’s schools are set to lose £3.6m by 2020. From my conversations with local teachers and parents, the experience on the ground varies wildly from that expressed at the dispatch box by the Secretary of State this afternoon.
The Government continues to be willing to turn a blind eye to the crisis in our schools.’