Michael Fabricant raised in the House of Commons today the thorny question
of Staffordshire School Funding following the publication earlier this week
of the Government’s long-awaited Local Government Funding Consultation
Paper. Far from providing fair funding for Staffordshire schoolchildren
who are currently 2nd from bottom in the national funding league, of the 4
options suggested by the paper: three options would slash funding to
Staffordshire Schools while the fourth would provide just slightly more
funding but widen the funding gap between schools in Staffordshire and those
in other counties.
In calling for a full debate in the House on these proposals, Michael
Fabricant told the Leader of the House, Robin Cook, this morning (Thursday
11th July): "Can you imagine the disappointment felt by headteachers,
teachers, and parents in Staffordshire that this long-awaited report does
nothing to right the injustice to Staffordshire education?" Michael
reminded the House that it was a Labour election pledge back in 1997 to
right this wrong within 1 year in office.
Michael Fabricant now says "But despite this delay, we all had high hopes
for this long-awaited Paper. It is devastating that the gap between
Staffordshire education funding and those of other counties will grow still
worse under all four options proposed in the Paper and there is a
possibility that we may even suffer further cuts.
"As one local headteacher said to me: ‘Can you believe this? In the light
of all that has gone on over the years with our fair funding campaign for a
better deal for Staffordshire?!’
"I now hope that all Staffordshire MPs will unite with the County Council to
make counter-proposals in a last ditch effort to secure a better future for
students in Staffordshire schools. I will continue to make representations
in Parliament to Ministers and others over the finding in this Paper. I
hope other Staffordshire MPs – regardless of Party – will do so too".
The paper referred to is "Local Government Finance: Formula Grant
Distribution, A Consultation Paper"