Sheffield headteachers petition Downing Street to demand extra school funding
Headteachers from Sheffield have descended on Downing Street to demand more money for schools.
TheyÂ haveÂ joined 1,000Â headteachersÂ from around the country for the rally outside Parliament before they delivered a petition toÂ DowningÂ StreetÂ calling on the Government to fairer fund schools
It comes amid a growing funding crisis in Sheffield which could see staff losing their jobs, class sizes increased and a schools cuttingÂ downÂ to four-and-a-half weeks.
The Government's new national funding formula, aimed at redistributing funding to historically underfunded areas, helps the situation a little and will lead to an overall increase in funding for Sheffield by 2020/21.
But headteachers are sturggling to balance their budgets over the next few years.
More than 8,000 have signed an online petiton The Star and Sheffield Telegraph calling on the Government to redress the funding situation.
The headteachers on the march quote theÂ Institute of Fiscal Studies' claim that per pupil funding has fallen eight per centÂ in real terms since 2010.
The government says school funds will rise to a record Â£43.5bn by 2020.
Cathy Rowland, headteacher of Dobcroft Infant School, in Millhouses, is on the march.
She said: 'With austerity, we all realise we have to make changes.
'But the reality is much worse. What we are left with is very unpalatable resources.'
Paul Whiteman, general secretary of school leaders' union NAHT, said: 'Headteachers are not normally the marching kind.
'So, when they do, it must be serious. They're sick of being told that there's more money in education than ever before, when what they see with their own eyes every day proves that it's just not enough.
'More and more now, childrenÂ succeedÂ despite the system, not because of it. And that can't be right.'
The Department of Education has disputed the budgetary drop, stating that the spending on schooling is the highest its ever been, with funding rising to a record Â£43.5bn by 2020 '“ 50 per cent more in real terms per pupil than in 2000.
To sign the online petition visitÂ www.change.org/p/fair-fund-for-sheffield-schools Â