James Heappey, the prospective Conservative MP for the Wells constituency, says school funding arrangements need to be fixed to ensure that young people in Somerset get a fair deal.
The Association of School and College Leaders today suggests the poorest-funded schools will receive £1.9m less than the best-funded in the next year. Its analysis says the underlying problem continues to be that funding is still impacted by historical factors going back to the 1980s when government grants were allocated to local authorities according to the amount they had traditionally spent on education.
James Heappey said:
“Funding for our children – whether in nursery or in school – has long been unfair. The funding model has become hopelessly distorted with children in some local authority areas receiving double the amount allocated per child in Somerset.
“The Pupil Premium introduced by this Government has done something to address funding for children from the most deprived backgrounds, but the underlying problem remains unchanged; children in rural areas should not be at a disadvantage and deserve the same funding as those living elsewhere.
“I will be campaigning vigorously to see this put right in the next Parliament. It is no criticism of the Pupil Premium but we must go further and ensure a fair start in life for all kids no matter where they live.”