Members of the Saltash branch of The Labour Party met at The Ploughman Pub on Liskeard Road, Saltash on the evening of 26th June to discuss cuts to schools budgets. At a well-attended meeting guest speaker Glen Mynott, Joint Campaign Co-ordinator for South East Cornwall Labour Party spoke about the extent of government cuts to school funding and how it affects schools in Saltash. It was explained that under the National Funding Formula, the local secondary school, Saltash.net Community School would receive £188,827 less in 2019/20 than it did in 2015/16 despite having more pupils and Brunel Primary School would receive £55,589 less.
Increased class sizes
Loss of school staff
Cuts to extra-curricular activities & resources
The subsequent lively discussion touched on the effect of academisation on school budgets, particularly increasing examples of multi-academy trusts getting into financial difficulties due to poor management of finances and needing to be bailed out with money from the school budget or having their debts written off before being taken over by other multi-academy trusts. An example close to home is The Schools Company Trust that ran three pupil referral units in Devon and having got into financial difficulties had its schools taken away and given to another company called WAVE.
The Labour Party in South-East Cornwall is currently campaigning against school cuts and calling on the government to restore school budgets in real terms to their level in 2010 when the Conservatives returned to government. The Labour Party will hold a number of events throughout the constituency where members of the public can get information about the effect of the cuts upon local schools and what they can do about it.