By Ian Dipple Friday 26 October 2012 Updated: 26/10 12:40
THE SCHOOLS minister has confirmed schools across Bromsgrove will not be left to cope with huge budget cuts in three years time as a result of changes to the way they are funded.
David Laws announced on Tuesday (October 23) during a Westminster Hall debate on the impact of school funding changes in Worcestershire, a Minimum Funding Guarantee would continue to operate after 2015.
It means school budgets should not rise or fall more than 1.5 per cent per pupil while the process of moving to a fairer national funding formula is introduced, to address a situation which sees Worcestershire pupils receive about £1,000 less than neighbouring Birmingham.
Although schools across Bromsgrove overall would gain from the changes, some could have lost hundreds of thousands of pounds.
Mr Laws acknowledged the current system was unfair and 'opaque' and it needed to be simplified to pave the way for a fairer national funding formula, but he added while it was being introduced the MFG would continue to operate.
"We cannot confirm the exact value of that guarantee as it covers the next spending review period; we need to know our budget for that period and to have Treasury approval before giving any such guarantees. None the less, we are absolutely committed to protecting school budgets from unmanageable falls," he said.
"At the moment, we have made it clear that we will continue it beyond the period of 2014-15. Although we are not in a position to make an announcement yet, given that we are seeking to move to a national funding formula, it is highly likely we will need some form of protection for a considerable period."
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