City MP launches survey to understand latest pressures on Portsmouth schools

Stephen Morgan, Member of Parliament for Portsmouth South, has launched a survey for headteachers, teachers and governors to share with him their views and concerns over school cuts to Portsmouth.

Writing to Headteachers this week with questions ranging from class sizes, levels of staffing, impact of cuts on equipment and resources and calling for case studies of Government cuts, the MP plans to use the findings to keep pressure on Ministers to provide fairer funding to Portsmouth.

Under Government plans, Portsmouth is set to lose £3.7m, affecting over 50 schools and colleges in the city.

Earlier this year Mr Morgan launched his ‘Portsmouth Against School Cuts’ campaign bringing local people, teachers and school staff together to lobby against the cuts in the city.

In the letter to Heads, Stephen said:

“You may be aware of my drive for fairer funding for Portsmouth schools.

Our ‘Portsmouth Against School Cuts’ campaign has been received incredibly well by local people, parents and teachers and with our city’s schools set to lose £3.7 million under this government, it’s not surprising that the concern is palpable.

I’m hearing again and again when I visit Portsmouth schools, or meeting teachers and support staff, how stretched our schools and colleges are.

But I’m keen to get a more specific picture of how budget cuts are impacting Portsmouth pupils and those dedicated to teaching them, as well the tough choices you may be having to make”.

The amount of per pupil spending in England’s schools has fallen by 8% since 2010, says an analysis by the Institute for Fiscal Studies.

The study says rising pupil numbers – and cuts to local authorities and sixth form funding – have caused a real-term reduction in school spending.

School leaders have been protesting that cash shortages have forced them to cut staff and to ask parents for financial assistance.

The findings from the survey will feed into a meeting Stephen hopes to have with the Minister for School Standards in Parliament soon.

On the survey he said:

“Not only will the survey give me a better idea of pinch points and specific issues but will also be invaluable in my work lobbying government including a forthcoming meeting with the Schools Minister”.