Government funding for schools in England at a record high

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Funding for mainstream schools and high needs is increasing to the highest ever in real terms per pupil.

Schools in England are set to benefit from a cash injection as education funding reaches almost £60 billion in 2024/25 – its highest ever level in real terms.

This includes additional funding for both disadvantaged pupils and children with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND), with pupil premium and high needs budgets both going up alongside mainstream investment.

An extra £440 million investment to support pupils with SEND is being allocated to local authorities and used to fund special schools and provide mainstream schools with additional resources to meet the needs of pupils with complex SEND.

Funding for those with complex needs is also rising to £10.5 billion in 2024-25 – an increase of more than 60% in just five years.

Pupil premium funding rates will increase to £1,480 for primary pupils and £1,050 for secondary pupils in 2024-25, an increase of 10% since 2021-22 bringing total funding to more than £2.9 billion overall, supporting schools in disadvantaged areas to raise educational outcomes for the pupils who need it most.

The increases builds on the brilliant work going on in schools up and down the country, with standards continuing to rise. Currently, 89% of schools rated good or outstanding, up from 68% in 2010.

Thanks to the Government’s widespread reforms, England continues to rise up the global rankings in maths, reading and science. Just this month, England was ranked 11th in the world for maths, up from 27th in 2009, and in May, England was named ‘best in the west’ for primary reading.

Overall, school funding for mainstream schools and high needs is increasing by more than £1.8 billion in 2024-25 compared to 2023-24, taking the total funding to over £59.6 billion – the highest level in history, in real terms.

Education Secretary Gillian Keegan said:

Our schools and our teachers are better than ever – and it’s so important that as standards continue to rise, so does our support for schools.

That’s why boosting school funding was the first thing I did as Education Secretary, and why I will continue to make sure our brilliant schools and teachers have the tools they need to make sure every child receives a world class education.

I know costs for schools continue to be high, but ensuring schools are funded at their highest level in history in real terms will give parents and schools the confidence that education continues to be the top for this Government.

Education Secretary Gillian Keegan. Photo credit: UK Gov

Today’s funding allocations include an additional £2 billion for 24/25, announced at the Autumn Statement last year, to recognise the higher costs faced by schools. That also builds on the significant extra investment provided to schools as part of this year’s teacher pay offer. 

The vast majority of this funding is allocated through the Dedicated Schools Grant, which is calculated using the National Funding Formula (NFF).  The majority of the schools NFF is allocated on a per-pupil basis, and disadvantaged pupils attract additional funding to their school. The allocations also factor in differences in wage costs between areas.

The recently announced funding for teachers’ pay is on top of this, which will total £900 million in 2024-25.

Schools will also receive further funding to support with increases to employer contribution rates to the Teachers’ Pensions Scheme from April. This is over and above the funding they will receive via the NFF from within today’s DSG allocations.

The Department will announce further details on this funding for pensions, including funding rates and allocations, in due course.

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