It is a pleasure to serve under your chairship, Sir Christopher.
Over the past few months, I have conducted two surveys in my constituency about the adequacy of school funding and the impact of funding cuts to schools. The first was of the schools concerned, which described the impact of funding cuts on their ability to deliver the educational outcomes that their pupils deserve. The second was of parents, who are all too aware of the impact of the school cuts on their children’s education. I want to channel their voices and tell hon. Members more about schools and parents in Leeds North West. and by extension the whole country.
For schools the problem is clear: every school surveyed had experienced the need to make some form of cut since 2015. More than 57% have been forced to make staffing cuts due to funding pressures, and 86% have had to reduce the number of books and the educational equipment available to students. More than half the schools surveyed had to let teaching assistants go, and the same number had to make cuts to cleaning and maintenance services, potentially putting our children at risk.