Funding cut fears after school asks parents to buy toilet paper and classroom essentials

Fears have been raised over Government funding cuts after a primary school was left ‘begging for toilet paper’.

St Edmund Campion Catholic Primary School sent an email out on Monday evening (June 11) with a link to the school’s Amazon Wish List page.

It allows people to buy additional items when making a purchase and send them to the school.

Among the items on the list are toilet paper, plus various office and classroom supplies.

Concerned parent Catherine del Campo has a ten-year-old daughter at the school.

She said: “I was shaken and nearly in tears, this is really desperate, the fact they are asking for office supplies and toilet paper.

“As a parent, if the school is begging for toilet paper then it makes you wonder what’s next?”

Catherine said she thought the new National Funding Formula was designed to iron out discrepancies in the way funding was applied to schools, but if schools are begging for essential items it would suggest the whole system is seriously underfunded.

“It doesn’t sit right with me that the government can find £50m for grammar schools when others are begging for toilet paper,” she said.

The £50m fund, announced in May, is for selective schools that can prove their commitment to admitting disadvantaged pupils.

Kate Foreman, business manager at St Edmund Campion, said this was the first year the school has received less funding from the Education Funding Agency when compared to the previous year.

She added a further £70,000 had been lost due to the Government’s decision to cut the Education Services Grant.

Academies and councils stopped receiving the grant last September.

Mrs Foreman said: “We’re still committed to providing our children with an outstanding education but there’s only so much you can do.

“Financially we’re OK this year, and the next two years will probably be fine but any longer than that it’s harder to evaluate.

“It’s certainly got more difficult over the last few years.”

The Government has defended the funding it provides for schools.

Detailing the new National Funding Formula in July last year, then Education Secretary Justine Greening said it will be a ‘fairer’ distribution and delivers ‘higher per pupil funding in respect of every school, and in every local area’.

In March, Prime Minister Theresa May told the House of Commons it was spending more on schools ‘than ever before’.

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