ASCL comment on EPI school Covid costs report

22/12/2020
Geoff Barton, General Secretary of the Association of School and College Leaders comments on the Education Policy Institute (EPI) report, ‘Assessing Covid-19 cost pressures on England’s schools’.
 
Commenting on the Education Policy Institute (EPI) report, ‘Assessing Covid-19 cost pressures on England’s schools’, Geoff Barton, General Secretary of the Association of School and College Leaders, said:

Ministers have rightly praised the fantastic work of schools during the Covid emergency, but warm words don’t pay the bills.

This report shows that the government has failed to recognise the financial impact on schools of the pandemic and failed to support them properly during a period in which they have operated under immense and relentless pressure. Budgets were already very tight because of years of government underfunding and the position is now even worse.

It will inevitably mean schools will need to make more cuts and this will impact on the academic and pastoral support they are able to provide to pupils in the wake of the pandemic.

“The small amount of financial support which the government has made available for extra costs during the emergency has been piecemeal, extremely limited in scope, and inadequate.


It falls back on the mantra that it is boosting school funding with a three-year settlement of an additional £7.1 billion by 2022/23.

However, much of this money will be absorbed by rising costs that are unavoidable and comes after years of real-terms cuts which have had a devastating impact.”