R4U opposes £2 million cuts to Uttlesford Secondary Schools

Residents for Uttlesford is opposing the more than £2 million funding cuts being forced onto Uttlesford schools by central government.

John Lodge (R4U)John Lodge
R4U Chair & Leader UDC

John Lodge, R4U Leader at UDC, said “All of our schools in Uttlesford are facing a funding crisis that will limit the quality of teaching, reduce the qualifications that our children obtain, and so limit their opportunities in life. Central government has announced new ‘funding formula’ proposals, which are really sweeping cuts to essential budgets which will force schools to increase class sizes and reduce teaching staff. They are trying to pretend that it is about the redistribution of budgets, but it’s not. According to a report published by ATL/NUT, in real-terms 98% of schools across the county are actually having their funding slashed by £3 billion in total. This number is also supported by the National Audit Office.”

“The ATL/NUT analysis indicates that under the government’s proposals the four Uttlesford secondary schools are likely to face £2 million in additional cuts by 2020. Saffron Walden County High could see nearly £1 million removed from its funding, which is 14%. To put it into context, that is the equivalent of sacking 25 teachers or a reduction of £657 per pupil of essential funding. In Dunmow, Helena Romanes could see cuts of £500,000, and Newport’s Joyce Frankland and Stansted Forest Hall another £500,000 between them. R4U opposes these reductions.”

“These cuts follow 5 years of already reduced funding. Essex County Council is responsible for education locally. Seventy-two pence in every pound of our council tax goes to them – and they even put it up by nearly 4% last year, yet where is our money for our schools? Current Essex County Councillor for Stansted Ray Gooding is responsible for education in Essex but so far he has remained silent on these severe cuts and the previous ones. What if anything does ECC proposes to do about these cuts for Uttlesford families? We urge residents to find out about the cuts proposed to their secondary and primary schools at www.schoolcuts.org.uk.”

About Residents for Uttlesford

Residents for Uttlesford (R4U) is the local independent party of north-west Essex towns and villages. Formed in 2014 by a number of residents’ groups, the party believes that on local issues residents should decide, not Westminster parties.

R4U leads Uttlesford District Council (UDC). It is the fastest growing local political movement in its district. In its first election in 2015 it became the second party at UDC. In 2017 it solidified its position with a further by-election gain with 60% of the vote. In the May 2019 Local Elections R4U gained majority control of UDC winning two-thirds of the seats. The result delivered the biggest loss of seats by any UK Conservative controlled council in the UK.

R4U’s success has been based on the desire to give local people a voice and implement long range strategic and sustainable plans for their area.

R4U also leads Saffron Walden Town Council, where under its stewardship the council has rebuilt finances, invested in community assets, and won multiple awards, including the best run council in Essex. It is a minority party on Great Dunmow Town Council.

Residents for Uttlesford can be found on the web at www.residents4u.org.