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Funding formula ‘fails to address double disadvantage’ faced by poorer pupils

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Charlotte Santry at the TES covers the Sutton Trust’s response to proposals for the new National Funding Formula.

The government’s proposed national funding formula for schools fails to recognise the “double disadvantage” faced by pupils from poor homes in deprived neighbourhoods, according to the Sutton Trust and the Education Endowment Foundation.

In a joint submission to a consultation on the government’s proposals the two bodies have expressed concern that the formula “seems to advantage schools with low prior attainment ahead of schools with high deprivation”.

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The trust and EEF are calling on the government to make sure funding “better reflects the particularly challenging circumstances of deprivation at home and its effect on children’s chances in schools”.

In their submission, the charities also raise concerns about real-term cuts to individual school budgets through the new formula, and the impact they may have on pupils.

While they believe there needs to be a rebalancing of funding across the country, they are concerned that the funding formula as it stands will have a particularly negative impact on education in London.

Sir Peter Lampl, chairman of the Sutton Trust and of the EEF, said today: “While we welcome plans for a fair and transparent funding system, the government proposals do not do enough to recognise the double disadvantaged that pupils from poor homes and deprived neighbourhood face.

“It is particularly concerning that schools serving poorer pupils in London look set to lose out. We are worried that this could jeopardise the work that schools in the capital have done to improve results for poor pupils.”

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Read the full article here. See further coverage of our response to the National Funding Formula here.