Devon Schools Funding

26th April 2017

Geoffrey Cox QC, MP for Torridge and West Devon, this week joined forces with fellow Devon MPs to ask the Prime Minister to recommit a Conservative Government ‘unequivocally’ to a fairer funding settlement although the overall school’s budget under proposed changes to the Education Funding Formula will result in a 0.2% increase in the amount of money going to Devon’s schools.

In the letter, the MPs express their ‘deep unease’ at the prospect that some, mainly secondary schools in Devon will be worse off. 

In addition to asking the Prime Minister to do ‘everything possible’ to prevent this, the MPs are also calling on the Prime Minister make the introduction of a fairer education funding formula a key part of the forthcoming Conservative Manifesto. 

The letter, which is signed by seven Devon MPs, says:

‘You will be aware of the deep unease of many of us concerning the proposed changes to the education funding formula which will have an adverse impact on many of our historically underfunded schools. We have previously made representations to you, Justine Greening and Nick Gibb about this matter.

‘We would ask that everything possible is done to ensure that no school in Devon is worse off as a result of these changes.

‘The 2015 manifesto made clear that a Conservative administration would introduce a genuinely fair funding formula for our schools. We would ask that this pledge is unequivocally restated in the 2017 manifesto. This will underscore our commitment to our part of the country, which felt ignored and neglected for so many years until these positive pledges were made prior to the successful 2015 General Election.’

Mr Cox has continued to represent and advocate for the interest in schools in Torridge and West Devon. The co-signed letter follows Mr Cox’s meeting with the Secretary of State for Education, Justine Greening MP, where he made clear the concerns that head teachers in his constituency had raised with him.

He has previously written to the Education Department to highlight the impact of the proposed formula on schools in the rural area and met the Heads of the Devon Association of Primary Headteachers and the Devon Association of Secondary Headteachers.

Mr Cox said: “It is essential that any new national education grant formula should not result in disproportionate effects on some of our schools.

“I have repeatedly pointed out that the current proposal would have unnecessary and undesirable anomalies and I have once again called on the Government to do its utmost to ensure no school in Devon is worse off and have pressed the Prime Minster to pledge to a fairer funding system in the Conservative Manifesto.”