School funding reforms could see Lincolnshire receive and extra £4.6 million

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Government plans to end the ‘historical postcode lottery’ in school funding means Lincolnshire could be in line for an extra £4.6 million (2.3 per cent).

The extra funding for nurseries, primary, secondary, and special schools across the county, following a reform of the funding system announced by the Government, is due to take effect in 2018-19.

Education secretary Justine Greening described reforms to its £85.2 billion education spending programme as ‘an end to historical unfairness and underfunding for certain schools’. More than 10,000 schools in semi-urban and rural counties, such as Lincolnshire and Rutland, could see an increase in education funding of up to three per cent.

Details of how schools funding would be shaken up were announced before Christmas, including moves to a ‘national funding formula’ whereby no school will see its annual cash pot per pupils cut by more than 1.5 per cent.

Lincolnshire County Council’s last allocation of the Government’s Dedicated Schools Grant (DSG) was £497.222 million in 2016/17, used to support both academies and local authority-maintained schools.

Outlining the reforms, Ms Greening said: “We need a system that funds schools according to the needs of their pupils rather than their postcode, levelling the playing field and giving parents the confidence that every child will have an equal opportunity to reach their full potential.

“Our proposed reforms will mean an end to historical unfairness and underfunding for certain schools.”

Coun Patricia Bradwell, executive member for children’s services at Lincolnshire said: “We have been campaigning for a fairer funding allocation for some years because it can’t be right that authorities in other parts of the country get more money to pass on to schools due to historical allocations.

“We were very disappointed when the new Secretary of State for Education delayed the proposed national funding formula, originally set for 2017, for another year. This is long overdue and we will be making our strong views known in any consultation leading up to the changes.”