Sixth form funding is in crisis. Two deep cuts to funding were made after 2010 and the national funding rate (‘the rate’) for 16 and 17 year olds has been frozen at £4,000 per student, per year since 2013. Funding for 18 year olds was cut to just £3,300 per student in 2014. The running costs of schools and colleges have increased sharply since 2010 and the government has imposed a range of new requirements on institutions. This has left much less money for schools and colleges to spend on the front line education of students at a time when the needs of young people have become increasingly complex (for example the sharp rise in students experiencing mental health problems).

Research from London Economics has shown that the rate needs to increase by at least £760 per student, per year to ensure that schools and colleges can continue to deliver a high quality, internationally-competitive education. We are calling on the government to make two commitments in the 2019 spending review:

  • Raise the rate for 16, 17 and 18 year old students to at least £4,760 per year
  • Raise the rate in line with inflation each year

This rate rise should be in addition to, rather than instead of, funding that may be required by schools and colleges to meet significant new costs such as increased employer contributions to the Teachers’ Pension Scheme.

The ongoing underinvestment in sixth form education is bad for students, bad for our international competitiveness and bad for social mobility. As the associations that represent schools, colleges, teachers, support staff, students and governors in England, we are calling on the government to #raisetherate – before it’s too late.

Campaign news, videos and blogposts can be found here.

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Get Involved

We need the support of school and college leaders, governors, students, parents, teachers and support staff to make the campaign a success.  There are lots of ways to get involved, for example:

  • Sign the campaign petition here
  • Write to your local MP to secure their support for the campaign (a full list of MPs can be found here)
  • Invite local MPs to your school or college
  • Schools and college leaders can write to parents to secure their support for the campaign 
  • Tweet support using the campaign infographics and hashtag #raisetherate
  • Take photographs using the campaign poster and share on social media

More information and template letters can be found in the Resources section.

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