Schools: Finance

Department for Education written question – answered on 21st September 2017.

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Photo of Layla Moran Layla Moran Liberal Democrat, Oxford West and Abingdon

To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what estimate she has made of the number of schools in (a) England and (b) each local authority in England that are in budgetary surplus; and what the average surplus is (a) in the UK and (b) in each local authority.

Photo of Layla Moran Layla Moran Liberal Democrat, Oxford West and Abingdon

To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what estimate she has made of the number of schools in (a) England and (b) each local authority in England that carry an in-year deficit for each of the last (i) two, (ii) three, (iii) four and (iv) five years.

Photo of Layla Moran Layla Moran Liberal Democrat, Oxford West and Abingdon

To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what estimate she has made of the number of schools in (a) England and (b) each local authority in England that were in-year deficit in each of the last five years.

Photo of Nick Gibb Nick Gibb Minister of State (Department for Education)

The Government want schools to have the resources they need to deliver a high quality education for their pupils. This is why we have announced that under the national funding formula there will be an additional £1.3 billion for schools and high needs across 2018-19 and 2019-20, on top of existing spending plans. This means that core funding for schools and high needs will rise from almost £41 billion in 2017-18 to £42.4 billion in 2018-19. In 2019-20, this will rise again to £43.5 billion.

On the latest available data, for 2015-16, the total number of local authority maintained schools in England with a cumulative budgetary surplus was 15,621 and the average surplus per local authority maintained school was £141,264.

For academies, we collect cumulative budgetary surplus data at trust level – in 2015/16 the total number of single academy trusts (SATs) in cumulative surplus was 1,735 and the total number of multi academy trusts (MATs) in cumulative surplus was 1,084. The median cumulative surplus for academy trusts (of which a higher proportion are secondary schools than is the case for maintained schools) was £364,000 for SATs and £664,000 for MATs.

The total number of schools in England with an in year deficit in each of the last five years can be found in the table attached (Annex A). It is important to note that an in year deficit is not in itself a cause for concern unless it is symptomatic of a trend towards a cumulative deficit. Many schools will draw on their reserves for a range of planned reasons – for example to spend on capital projects.

The total number of schools in England that carried an in year deficit for each of the last (i) two, (ii) three, (iii) four and (iv) five years can be found in the table attached

(Annex B).

The breakdown at local authority level for local authority maintained schools (for each of these areas) and academies (for in year deficits) can be determined using the local authority and school expenditure data, which is available here: https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/statistics-local-authority-school-finance-data, and is summarised in the spreadsheet attached (Annex C).

The Department collects data on cumulative surpluses for academies at trust level only. As schools managed by MATs do not necessarily fall within the same local authority area, we are unable to present the data broken down by local authority.

Annex_A_and_Annex_B (Word Document, 12.92 KB)
Annex_C (Excel SpreadSheet, 48.8 KB)

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