MP steps up fight for Enfield schools' budget

By Clare Casey in Local People

ENFIELD MP, Joan Ryan, has today (Monday) written to the Secretary of State for Education urging her to revise her education proposals that could seriously “compromise education standards in Enfield”.

Speaking on behalf of headteachers, staff and parents, Ms Ryan raised a number of serious concerns with the government’s planned shake-up of school funding, which will “in no way address the financial pressures facing so many schools” in Enfield North and across the borough.

She said: “It is clear from the series of meetings I have held with headteachers and staff from schools in my constituency and from the representations I have received from concerned parents that we are facing a difficult and damaging funding settlement.

“A significant number of mainstream and SEN (Special Educational Needs) schools in Enfield North, and across the borough, will be put into a position that is financially unsustainable and could seriously compromise education standards.

“Schools in Enfield are facing a number of budgetary pressures already - from significant increases in employer National Insurance and pension contributions to unfunded pay rises for staff, and from cuts to local government services to a growing number of children with special educational needs and disabilities.

“This situation is unacceptable and I will continue to campaign for schools in Enfield to be given a fair deal and for school funding, across the board, to be levelled up, not down.”

Hundreds of schools across London are being forced to take drastic measures — including laying off teachers — to help make ends meet.

Heads are begging parents to dip into their pockets to boost cash-strapped coffers, reducing the number of subjects offered at A-level and cutting extracurricular activities.

London Councils says Education Secretary Justine Greening’s attempt to “rebalance” funding across the country will result in 1,500 schools in the capital — 70 per cent of the total — facing cuts.

Ms Greening is now under pressure to rethink the funding overhaul.

The Enfield North MP added: “The NFF (National Funding Formula) does not provide adequate support for those pupils most in need in my constituency. Enfield has the highest number of children living in poverty – almost 1/3 of our children – than any other London borough and is the 5th most deprived borough in the capital.”

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