Autumn Budget: Statement from the support Our Sixth-formers campaign partners
Schools and colleges will welcome the Chancellor’s decision to invest £177 million in post-16 maths, as sixth formers in England are chronically underfunded compared to other countries and other phases of education. Our recent funding impact survey showed that over a third of schools and colleges have dropped STEM courses as a result of funding pressures, including Further Maths and Core Maths qualifications.
However, this new package of measures does not address the fundamental underfunding of sixth form education in England. The government’s priority should be to ensure that schools and colleges receive the funding they need to provide young people with a rounded, high quality, education – irrespective of the subjects they choose to study at A level.
The government has clearly listened to some of the concerns expressed through the Support Our Sixth-formers campaign – but there is still a long way to go to ensure all sixth form students in England get a fair deal on funding. Our campaign will continue until the government restores a link between funding levels and the cost of providing a high quality sixth form education. This should follow a fundamental review of 16-19 funding - something the government should now undertake as a matter of urgency.