Issue - decisions
Motions on notice 6 February 2017 - Secondary School Funding and Pupil Places in Oxford
24/02/2017 - Secondary School Funding and Pupil Places in Oxford (proposed by Councillor Tidball, seconded by Councillor Price)
Councillor Tidball proposed her submitted motion, seconded by Councillor Price.
After debate and on being put to the vote, the motion was declared carried.
Council resolved to adopt the motion as set out below:
Continuing its decimation of funding for our children’s education, the Tory Government’s Fairer Funding proposals will hit disadvantaged children hardest and will leave 98% of schools facing a real terms cut in per-pupil funding.. That’s an average cut to secondary schools of -£405,611 and an average loss per secondary school pupil of -£477. In Oxford, schools such as the Oxford Academy will face a damaging -£414,208 cut in its funding by 2019 and a -£616 cut per pupil.
This reform will place more pressure on the shortage of secondary school places in Oxford. The way in which school location and catchment areas have worked has meant that several areas of the city have been unable to count any one school as the school for their local community. Parental choice has simply not been operating effectively. As a result, children have been scattered across many different schools when they go into year 7, leading to the break up of friendships and local peer groups and long bus and cycle journeys across the city. It also causes huge amounts of stress for children with Special Educational Needs. By 2019, there will not be enough places in Oxford secondaries for all the children who are moving up in that year. The proposals for a new free school on the Meadowbrook site are controversial and have been delayed. An interim solution involving temporary buildings on the Cherwell School site, allowing time for a satisfactory long term alternative (possibly on Osney Mead) is being developed. It is vital that measures are put in place within the next few months to meet the 2019/20 ‘bulge’; and that time is given to find the best long term solution to meet the expected pattern of population growth across the city.
Council calls on our local MPs to support the City Council in opposing these funding reductions and calls on the City Executive Board to work with the University, the River Academy Trust and the City Council’s planning team, and to consult with Oxfordshire County Council, to find a satisfactory long term solution to the capacity problems of Oxford’s secondary schools.