Schools: Coronavirus

Department for Education written question – answered on 17th November 2020.

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Photo of Daisy Cooper Daisy Cooper Liberal Democrat Spokesperson (Education)

To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what assessment he has made of the adequacy of funding for schools that were in Tier 3 covid-19 local alert level areas before the November 2020 covid-19 lockdown in England was imposed.

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

Getting all children and young people back into school for the new academic year has been a national priority. Schools have continued to receive their core funding allocations throughout the COVID-19 outbreak. Following last year’s Spending Round, school budgets are rising by £2.6 billion in the 2020-21 financial year, £4.8 billion in 2021-22, and £7.1 billion in 2022-23, compared to 2019-20. On average, schools are attracting 4.2% more per pupil in 2020-21 compared to 2019-20. As stated in our guidance, schools should use these existing resources when making arrangements for the autumn term. The full guidance on the reopening of schools is available here: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/actions-for-schools-during-the-coronavirus-outbreak/guidance-for-full-opening-schools.

Schools have also been able to claim additional funding for exceptional costs incurred due to the COVID-19 outbreak between March to July 2020, such as additional cleaning required due to confirmed or suspected COVID-19 cases, and increased premises costs to keep schools open for priority groups during the Easter and summer half-term holidays. The guidance about claiming additional funding for exceptional costs associated with COVID-19 is available through the following link: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/coronavirus-covid-19-financial-support-for-schools/school-funding-exceptional-costs-associated-with-coronavirus-covid-19-for-the-period-march-to-july-2020.

On Thursday 5 November 2020, the New National Restrictions replaced the Local COVID-19 Alert Level measures: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/education-and-childcare-settings-new-national-restrictions-from-5-november-2020. At the end of the new restrictions period, we will return to a regional approach, based on the latest data. At all local alert levels, the expectation is that education and childcare provision should continue as normal.

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