A Cambridge parent with two children at Parkside secondary school, one of the Parkside Federation schools, has issued his own plea for all parents to support the school after it wrote to them about what it described as a 'school funding crisis' and has won the support of Daniel Zeichner, MP for Cambridge.
Professor Nick Gay, a fellow of Christs College, is urging parents to reply to the government's consultation on Fair Funding for Schools which closes on 22 March. He said: "Like all parents, I have long supported the campaign for Fairer Funding for Cambridgeshire schools because the current funding formula means that our schools lose out compared to other local authorities and until 2015 received the lowest level of funding of any local authority in the whole country. Even now they are still in the bottom 10% of local authorities nationally. The government's promise to reform the National Funding Formula brought real hope that this would change.
I was dismayed to receive a letter from the school last week saying that not only would the proposed changes fail to address the unfair funding formula but also that the school was facing real term cuts of 8% over the next four years. Teaching unions have estimated that Parkside itself will lose up to £535 per pupil by 2019."
Professor Gay, who is planning to stand in Market ward for Labour in this year's County Council elections, added: " The school has told parents that they are reaching a financial breaking point and asked us to support them by replying to the government's consultation and make the case for our schools to be properly resourced. I urge every parent to help them fight for our children's education and make the government listen."
Daniel Zeichner, MP for Cambridge, said: "Cambridgeshire schools have long suffered from chronic underfunding and not only does the proposed new National Funding Formula fail to address this but our schools are also facing further deep cuts. I fully support Professor Gay's plea to parents to reply to the government consultation and make sure that that parents and schools speak with one powerful voice to tell the government that our schools must be better funded."