https://dfemedia.blog.gov.uk/2017/03/14/education-in-the-media-14-march-2017/

Education in the media: 14 March 2017

Today’s news review looks at a survey from YoungMinds into mental health provision in schools and a speculative piece from the Times on the National Funding Formula.

Mental health

Today, 14 March, YoungMinds published a report on mental health in schools and called for the Prime Minister to pledge greater support to the issue.

The i Newspaper covered this story, outlining how a survey by YoungMinds showed parents would rather send their children to schools where pupils are happy, even if this meant lower academic attainment.

Children’s mental health is an important issue and that’s why we have pledged to invest £1.4 billion on it.

As the Prime Minister announced on 9 January, every secondary school in the country is to be offered mental health first aid training and a new Green Paper will look at ways to transform mental health services in schools.

A Department for Education spokesperson said: ‎

It is vital that all children and young people get the help and support they need. That is why we want to strengthen the links between schools and local NHS mental health staff, backed by an additional £1.4 billion government investment.

 

As part of this, we have already announced plans for every secondary school in the country to be offered mental health first aid training and a new Green Paper to look at ways to transform mental health services in schools. We will also be carrying out further research trials in schools into mental health support to help them understand what approaches work best.

National funding formula

Today, the Times published a piece claiming that the National Funding Formula proposals are expected to be withdrawn amid concerns from Conservative MPs.

This is pure speculation. No decision has been taken and we are consulting on the factors making up the formula – this is running until 22 March 2017.

A Department for Education spokesperson said:

We are consulting on the factors that will make up the formula and we know that it is important that we get this right so that every pound of the investment we make in education has the greatest impact. This second stage of the consultation will run until 22 March 2017, and we are keen to hear from as many schools, governors, local authorities and parents as possible.

 

As last week’s Budget demonstrates, the government is determined to ensure every child has access to a good school place and is given the opportunity to fulfil their potential. We have protected the core schools budget in real terms since 2010, with school funding at its highest level on record at more than £40bn in 2016-17 – and that is set to rise, as pupil numbers rise over the next two years, to £42 billion by 2019-20. But the system for distributing that funding across the country is unfair, opaque and outdated. We are going to end the historic post code lottery in school funding and under the proposed national schools funding formula, more than half of England’s schools will receive a cash boost.

 

We recognise that schools are facing cost pressures, which is why we will continue to provide support to help them use their funding in cost effective ways, including improving the way they buy goods and services so‎ they get the best possible value.

We are welcoming views on the second part of our National Funding Formula consultation here.