An independent review of school funding is to be carried out, following approval of a £250,000 contingency bid by the Treasury Minister.
Education Minister, Senator Tracey Vallois, has called for the review of Jersey’s education funding system, based on evidence which suggests that the current school funding formula is “not fit for purpose”.
This bid to fund the independent review has been approved by Deputy Susie Pinel in order to fulfil one of the Government’s strategic objectives to “put children first”.
Senator Vallois said: “The evidence from across the education service suggests that the current funding formula is not fit for purpose. There are a number of challenges, including increased demands on schools, including a new curriculum, new assessment and qualifications.
“We also have more complex challenges facing children, young people and families, and these groups require support for the significant increases in mental health challenges and wider social and emotional needs, and the impact of poverty on some families.
“A full and independent review of the school funding model is urgently required to ensure that we deliver on the common strategic priority to put children first. Children must be able to attend schools that are well-resourced, with good levels of financial headroom, and which support the best outcomes for all children. The review must also make recommendations for school funding in Jersey for the medium to longer term, for example, looking forward 20 years.”
Those in scope of this independent review include:
- all Government schools, including school-based nursery provision
- grant-funded private schools
- additional Resource Centres (ARCs)
- all 16-18 provision
- alternative provision, including for looked-after children (LAC), those educated other than at school (EOTAS), students in need of an adapted part-time / full-time provision and school refusers (long-term absence including due to social emotional mental health [SEMH])
The review will be completed by the end of 2019. It is anticipated that a new school funding formula will be consulted upon, agreed and published before the start of the academic year 2020-21 (September 2020).