Cash data: Breakdown of school spending revealed

SCHOOLS spending has been laid bare for the first time in new figures published by the Government.

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The data shows the total budget of every primary, secondary and special school in England, how much they spend per pupil, and a breakdown of how much is spent on areas such as teachers, energy, catering and information technology.

Education Secretary Michael Gove said he wanted parents to be able to "compare" schools in their area.

Brian Lightman, general secretary of the Association of School and College Leaders, warned the information was likely to confuse parents and said it was difficult to compare like with like.

The data revealed wide variations in the amount of money each school spent per pupil. While most secondaries spent between 4,000 to 8,000, some spent less than this and some more. The data suggested that one school had a per pupil spend of around 27,000, while another school's was almost 33,000. The figures, for spending in 2009/10, show that nationally, the average per pupil spend in secondary schools was 5,212.

In primaries, the national average spend per pupil was 4,037. But the data again revealed variations on this. While the majority of primaries spent between 3,000 -7,000, the figures suggested a handful had a per pupil spend of just over 10,000, while one primary appeared to have spent as little as 1,370.

Academies were exempt from this data because their financial information is held by the Charity Commission.