Our schools and colleges need £12.6bn more per year by 2022/23.

We are weary of empty promises.

Our schools are used to them by now.

We’re used to claims and pledges that fall short of the funding our schools system desperately needs.

Far too often the Government fills one gap in education funding by creating another one somewhere else.

It has taken us 3 years to work out exactly how much the Government needs to commit to fix school funding. We did the maths – for early years, primary and secondary schools, 16-19 education, and high needs up to the age of 25. 

In total, the education budget needs to be £12.6bn higher than current levels in real terms, per year, by 2022/23.

Previously, we’ve highlighted the amount that schools have had cut and how much their budgets fall short. 

Now, for the first time, there is a figure that shows how much funding is needed to adequately fund the system. We’ve never been able to calculate a solution to the crisis so comprehensively.

We’ve done the maths.

There is consensus across the board that our schools and colleges need a long-term plan. This funding crisis can’t be fixed without ensuring that maintained nursery schools stay open, children with SEND are adequately supported, and the education choices for post-16 are sufficiently funded.

So we’ve worked out what that plan needs to be.

£12.6bn more per year by 2022/23 would sufficiently cover:

  • Reversing the cuts

Restoring in real terms the 2015 level of funding for schools, high needs, early years, and pupil premium, and restoring in real terms the 2010 level of funding for 16-19 education

  • Increasing costs

Ensuring that funding increases in line with inflation and pupil numbers, and funds provision that meets the basic entitlement model: a qualified teacher for every class and class sizes of no more than 30

  • Crucial support for special educational needs and disabilities

So no child with SEND goes without a school place or adequate provision and resources.



Whilst the new Prime Minister vowed to increase school funding, we were doing the calculations – to make sure everyone knew exactly what our schools and colleges need to fix the crisis. Once and for all.

The new Prime Minister can choose to end the school funding crisis this term. 

He can do so by committing £12.6bn more, per year, by 2022/23. That’s how much our system needs.

So far, the new Prime Minister’s commitments have been vague…

He has pledged no concrete number to solving the funding crisis in all phases of education.

In June, then-candidate Boris Johnson pledged a funding increase for schools that, in reality, only amounted to a 0.1% increase in overall funding.

He then announced he would ‘reverse the real-term education cuts’ by increasing school funding in 2022/3.

On the steps of Downing Street in July, he claimed his Government were going to ‘level up per pupil funding in primary and secondary schools’.

He echoed this sentiment the next day in Parliament – his objective being to lift per capita per pupil funding across England.

It’s unclear if this will be an attempt to reverse cuts for schools only. Or if this covers SEND provision, post-16 education, and early years funding. 

It’s not clear what the PM is promising. 

The call for proper funding is loud and clear.

Courageous heads, governors, school staff and parent campaigners have led the charge to right this wrong. Education unions banded together to say enough is enough. Councillors of all parties stood together to urge the Government to act. 

In July this year, the Education Select Committee’s report echoed what we have all been saying – funding for schools and colleges is simply inadequate.

Where is the political will to fix the crisis?

The Government cannot get away with inadequate promises when we know how much our schools and colleges need to give our children the quality of education they deserve.

Cuts need to be reversed properly. Once and for all.

91% of schools have suffered Government cuts to per pupil funding since 2015.

8,500 children with special educational needs and disabilities do not have a school place for September.

England’s 392 remaining maintained nurseries are facing average 30% cuts to their funding over the next school year.

Our schools cannot afford any more empty promises or short-term fixes.

The Prime Minister must commit sufficient money, in enough time, to end the school funding crisis.

Join us, and sign our open letter to hold the Prime Minister to account over this figure, so schools get what they actually need.

Sign now