You will be aware that we have been campaigning for years for fair funding for schools in Wales. We have lobbied, we have debated, we have commissioned research and taken part in consultations. Now, with budgets squeezed tighter than we could ever have imagined, when our school leaders are crippled by the mounting pressure put on them, we need to come together and take action.
On Wednesday the Welsh Assembly is set to debate a report commissioned by the Children and Young Person’s committee that sets out radical and much-needed changes into how education is funded. The recommendations include a review of the funding formulae.
We have been made aware that despite the right noises being made by our AMs in terms of supporting such reform, members in the chamber are unlikely to back such recommendations. While we acknowledge that some of the recommendations don’t go as far as some would wish in terms of reform, we have to seize this opportunity to begin that change. Our AMs pay lip service to school leaders when on the campaign trail, but we are calling for them to now deliver on their promises.
We need you to make this happen, and we are calling for you to take the following action:
Lobby at the Senedd – On Wednesday, NAHT Cymru members will gather outside the Senedd at 3.30pm to take a public stand, appealing to AMs to back this report and commit to the change we so desperately need. We will gather with pledge cards, banners and placards to demonstrate the strength of feeling and show the politicians and the public that we are fighting to save our children's’ education. Following the demonstration and photo op, members will be encouraged to fill the public gallery and listen to the debate, which is due to start around 4pm.
Email your AM – please send the email below to your AM, calling for them to support the report. All you need to do is copy the email and add the name of your AM, your details and your school. AMs' details are also below on who to send it to. Please don’t forget to send the email to your constituency AM and your regional AM of which you will have several.
Ask your chair of governors to email your AM; please send on the email template.
Social media support – use your social media accounts to support our social media campaign.
- Use caption ‘are you backing the school funding report Assembly Member? With campaign pics (see below) and tag your AMs – don’t forget AMs have their own Twitter accounts, but government ministers have government one too, so tag in both
- Use the ‘I’m backing NAHT’s #FundWelshSchools' campaign pic and share on Twitter and Facebook
- Share this page to promote our activity on social media, and ask parents to join us in lobbying their AMs with our template letter
Media campaign – We need school leaders from across Wales to be willing to comment on this issue in the press. Anyone wishing to be contacted by the media on this, email Laura Doel (NAHT – Organising & Caseworker Support Officer Wales).
The evidence is irrefutable; schools are being expected to manage shrinking resources at a time when they are being asked to deliver an ever-expanding remit.
The new curriculum, the implications of the Additional Learning Needs and Education Tribunal (Wales) Act, and mental health and well-being support for pupils - they are all essential, but they all require large extra investment in order to be successful. Indeed if funding grew over the last ten years from 2010 as it should have, schools would be adequately resourced to meet pupils' needs.
Schools in Wales now have fewer teachers, fewer support staff and yet no fewer children and young people when trying to implement the above. In fact, they have more challenging pupils, greater demand placed on them through the curriculum and additional learning needs, and no way to resource any of this commitment.
Education is an investment, not a cost. And we need to fight for this investment here in Wales.
Read the report and its full list of recommendations.
Resources for you to use