In the first Budget announcement since Theresa May failed to establish a majority victory in June’s General Election, education appeared merely as a side note in Chancellor Philip Hammond’s speech.
He announced funds to boost teacher training, maths in Higher Education and computer science support but ignored calls from teaching unions, parents and Headteachers to pump more funds into core school budgets.
Kevin Courtney, Joint General Secretary of the Education Union, was particularly disappointed that teachers were not granted a pay rise. He stated:
“Despite the worsening teacher recruitment and retention crisis and the huge real terms cuts in teacher pay since 2010, the Chancellor had nothing to offer teachers or the profession. Instead of school staff losing jobs or seeing the value of their pay cut, the Government needs to invest in those working in education”.
However, Russell Hobby, Chief Executive of Teach First told iNews:
“There is a need for more teachers to thrive in their jobs and deliver great lessons in essential subjects. That’s why I was pleased to see the announcement of £42million for a Teacher Development Premium to develop those teachers working in the parts of the country where they’re needed most.”
He added such a movement “is vital if we’re to not only attract great people to schools but to keep them in teaching.”
Although funds have been set aside for teacher training, school staff remain under pressure with current budgets forcing Headteachers to cut support such as teaching assistants to balance the books. Added workloads are forcing professionals out of the system and funds for teacher training could be redundant if the current recruitment crisis in schools is not supported.
We would like to hear from you on the latest Budget announcement. Are the current funding streams enough to support your school adequately? Will the Teacher Development Premium do enough to keep you in the education industry?