‘Desperately needed’ extra school funding welcomed by Chichester MP

Gillian Keegan, Chichester MP, welcomes extra school funding
Gillian Keegan, Chichester MP, welcomes extra school funding

Extra funding for West Sussex schools has been welcomed by Chichester MP Gillian Keegan.

The Government plans to boost funding for five-16 schools by £7.1bn by 2022/23. This package will include £2.6bn extra in 2020/21, £4.8bn for 2021/22 and £7.1bn for 2022/23 compared to 2019/20.

This equates to a total of £14.1billion over the next three financial years.

Mrs Keegan said she was ‘delighted’ by the Prime Minister’s announcement as she, along with other West Sussex MPs, has been lobbying for increased funding for schools for the past two years.

She said: “This funding is desperately needed. I have met with almost all of our school headteachers, and I have been echoing their calls for more money to my Government colleagues.

“All of the West Sussex MPs will continue working with the Department for Education to get more detail on our exact settlement, in particular, SEND funding.

“In a recent letter from the Secretary of State I have been assured that Chichester will particularly benefit from increases. This fight is not over as we still need to secure more funding for Chichester Maintained Nursery and our FE College. I will continue to be a strong voice for our fantastic local schools.”

Sarah Palmer, headteacher at Camelsdale Primary School, added: “We look forward to seeing how much we receive in real terms. It is good to see the government now taking seriously the funding crisis that has thwarted schools in recent years.

“It will be interesting to see what happens in real-terms in relation to other rising costs. As West Sussex has been a poorly funded region, we look forward to benefitting this time from the additional funding. The children we support deserve the best life chances we can give them. Life is becoming more complex for families and there are certainly more children with additional and more complex needs in West Sussex and England. We welcome and very much need this extra money to deliver a first class education.”

Louise Goldsmith, Leader of West Sussex County Council, added: “I am delighted that our schools are to get this much-needed additional funding.

“We have worked very hard over the years to get the message across that schools in West Sussex are underfunded and this announcement shows that the Government has listened to us.”