Schools in Northern Ireland are in crisis. It is undeniable that a disproportionately high amount of an ever-diminishing education budget is being retained for spending on centralised services, leaving schools struggling as pupil numbers increase.
The way education funding is currently deployed is inefficient. In contrast to the rest of the UK where 2-10% is retained at centre, schools in Northern Ireland only receive a maximum of 59% of the overall education budget directly. Spending on pre-school, primary and secondary education per pupil is 46% higher in Scotland, 18% higher in England and 31% higher in Wales.
Our politicians must acknowledge that children and young people in Northern Ireland are not worth less.
In our events across the nation, parents, governors and school leaders are joining forces to highlight the impact of these devastating cuts.
Join us to protect the future of children and young people.
What we are campaigning for: 1. More money must be put into the education budget overall
Current funding for education in Northern Ireland is not sufficient to improveeducational outcomes. Additional funding from the confidence supply deal must go directly to schools as our school budgets have continued to shrink yet the school population is currently at its highest level since 1999.
Capital funding investment is not sufficient to support investment in improvements to Northern Ireland schools.
In addition, the current education system is failing to meet the needs of many of our most vulnerable pupils, the NI Audit Office has highlighted “neither the Department nor the EA can currently demonstrate value for money in terms of economy, efficiency or effectiveness in the provision of support to children with SEN in mainstream schools”.
2. Schools must be given control over a greater share of the budget
The overall education budget is being sliced too thinly before it reaches schools and this imbalance must be addressed. Schools in Northern Ireland receive only 59% of the overall education budget. The rest, a growing amount, is channeled through centralised control via bodies such as the Education Authority, CCMS, CCEA and CSC. Schools must be given greater control over their budgets so money can be properly channeled to the delivery of education for children.
3. A revision of the basic amount given to every child to sustain the real costs of a child’s education
As a result of an increase in the nursery/primary pupil numbers, primary school budgets have been spread ever more sparingly. In real terms, the AWPU has declined. In order to ensure children can continue to receive the excellent level of education they currently receive this must be addressed immediately.
Join our campaign to secure more funding
We are asking school communities to work together to highlight the impact the lack of funding is having now and to call for increased investment in the future.
- Attend NAHT(NI) events across the nation.
- Take to Twitter and Facebook and tell us why more money needs to be invested in Northern Irish schools using the hashtag #FundNIschools.