Last-ditch plea to MPs on school budgets

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NORTH Yorkshire County Council’s leaders are travelling to London today to make a last-ditch appeal to the county’s MPs about the Government’s proposals for school budgets.

Leader John Weighell and chief executive Richard Flinton will be pressing the seven MPs to back their pleas to the Department for Education for a degree of local flexibility in the way the proposed national funding formula for schools is applied.

The county council and its schools fear that the current budget proposals, which are due to take effect next April, will restrict the way that local decisions can be made.

The authority says the Government’s plans would lead to a third of schools in the county losing a figure approaching at least £7m, with some schools facing losses of 20 per cent.

Speaking at the county council’s executive meeting yesterday, Coun Weighell said: “I want to make it clear that this formula has not been initiated by us, but imposed from above. It is an imposition we are finding very hard to live with.”