Category Archives: Education
On Tuesday 24 October, the National Education Union and our partners will hold a major public rally and lobby of Parliament.
The National Education Union is focusing on improving two aspects of education funding – how much money goes into the system and how the money is shared across schools and colleges with different needs.
That’s why on Tuesday 24 October the National Education Union will hold a mass lobby of Parliament to protest against education funding cuts. This lobby has been timed to take place a month before the Chancellor delivers his budget statement. MPs will be asked to put pressure on the Chancellor to find the funding needed to reverse the cuts and invest in our children and young people.
In terms of how much money goes into the system, we know that, as pupil numbers rise, funding for their education is not rising accordingly. Since 2015, schools in England have had their funding per pupil frozen while inflation and other costs rise, leading to an effective £2.8 billion real-terms cut.
Schools are having to increase class sizes, reduce curriculum choices and make reductions to teaching and support staff posts. Some schools have been forced to seek help from parents to plug the holes in their budgets for books and resources.
ARK want the old Barnet football ground at Underhill, Barnet Lane. As Greenbelt, this cannot be developed, if spare school places exist. On Barnet Lane, is Totteridge Academy (TTA) with spare places. TTA has 29 acres of land if school places are needed in the future. Residents are seriously concerned about the narrow, bendy, country roads of Barnet Lane and Mays Lane which become congested as it is. Mays Lane supports a bus route. Two large secondary schools opposite each other is unwelcome.
Why was our Greenbelt for Sale?
- Barnet Council sold our Greenbelt land, to Tony Kleanthous, of Barnet Football Club for the price of a basic car. (about 15 years ago)
- Government Education Dept. bought it from Tony for £14.2 Million.
- Why was public money spent before planning permission was granted and at a time when existing schools are suffering cuts and have had cuts year on year, to their education budgets?
- Ark Pioneer promotes “Blended Learning” from the USA which claims to cut costs with fewer teachers. Computer learning, currently augments education but what is proposed is experimental. It is ARK’s own curriculum and software with an increase in unqualified teachers.
What Can You Do?
- Google on Barnet.gov.uk, “Planning application: Underhill Stadium AND Hockey Club”. The reference Number is 17/4840/FUL. You can comment as a resident of this Borough or if you work here.
- email Conservative councillors/visit their advice drop in surgeries.
- Save the Date: 18th September 2017: Public Meeting
Contact: Barnet Parents Defending Education at: firstname.lastname@example.org
This may include not doing the following:
- applying for any advertised jobs
- speaking at or organising academic or other conferences
- giving lectures
- accepting positions as visiting professors or researchers
- writing for any academic journal which is edited at or produced by the institution in question
- accepting new contracts as external examiners for taught courses
- collaborating on new research projects.
For the avoidance of doubt, where any of the above or other related activities forms part of your contractual duties you should only refrain from doing them after your head of department (or line manager) has given you prior permission to do so. UCU is not asking or encouraging academics to act in breach of their contracts of employment. In the event of any doubt, before acting advice should be sought from the union or clarification sought from your line manager.
Important UCU members employed by London Metropolitan University must not participate in the academic boycott in order to protect their contractual position.
Please also note: London Metropolitan University amended boycott advice
- The Institute of Fiscal Studies reports every school will have cuts, as a result of the National Funding Formula currently being proposed.
- The Department of Education reports a £3 billion overspend which is carried over to the new budgets.
- For the last 2 years the National Audit Office reported to Parliament that they cannot approve the accounts of the Department for Education.
- Academy schools are facing the same CUTS from successive years and CUTS from the proposed National Funding Formula still to come.
Barnet Academy schools are lobbying government. The co-ordinator told the TES (February 2017) “As professional managers we are already making savings, up to and including staffing cuts. We are not replacing staff who leave, cutting teaching and support provision, reducing spending on text books, and we will inevitably have to consider passing some of our costs onto parents.”
A Kent grammar, also in the national media is turning to parents to “fund the gap”. Parental charges for essential resources such as Teachers and text books is proposed as school fees for parents to pay.
Teacher redundancies equal larger class sizes. Teaching assistant redundancies undermine quality education. Cuts to teaching and Teaching Assistant jobs at a time when there is a crisis in teacher recruitment and retention is foolhardy to say the least.
Government can find money if it wants to fund the future of our children ’s education and the future of the teaching profession.
Government has allowed huge, unacceptable waste of the education budget for example 17 free schools have been funded lavishly and closed in the last 4 years.
There should be public information listing the land the DfE and Education Funding Agency has purchased for free schools out of our education budget but there is not.
It is not at all clear who is holding the title deeds to all this land purchased and the land that left public ownership through academisation.
The reasons for the waste of money including the legal costs of academisation are not in any way connected to improving education and are ideological.
Barnet has 90 local authority primary schools of which 36 are rated by Ofsted as Outstanding.
Barnet Schools must be funded for current staffing levels or excellence cannot continue.
School fees are not an option for the provision of State Education and a National Education System.
I am writing to ask if you would support our campaign to stop the cuts to school budgets.
Schools are set to lose £3 billion a year in real terms by 2020. These are the largest cuts to school funding since the 1970s.
MPs from all parties have been urging the Government to invest more in our schools; in some areas governors have taken the unprecedented move of threatening strike action while parents and teachers are organising meetings up and down the country to draw attention to the issue.
Our website www.schoolcuts.org.uk gives you an idea of severity of the problem. Just type in your postcode to see how schools in your area will be affected.
It would make a huge difference to our campaign if you would add your voice to our campaign, you can email your MP at http://www.schoolcuts.org.uk/# /email-your-mp
A parents campaign has been founded and has groups in a number of towns and cities. Please sign up with them too at www.fairfundingforallschools. org.
(General Secretary, National Union of Teachers)
See you on the streets.