Gareth Thomas with parents and pupils outside St Anselms Catholic Primary School
Gareth Thomas with parents and pupils outside St Anselms Catholic Primary School

Gareth Thomas MP warns today that schools in Harrow West have faced significant cuts to their funding since 2010. Cuts that have resulted in larger class sizes, reduced subject choice and less individual support for children.

New research by the Stop School Cuts coalition of unions and representative groups (NEU, NAHT, ASCL, NGA and ParentKind) show that 70%of schools in England have faced lower real-terms funding than in 2010, as a result of government cuts. This includes 66% of maintained primary schools and 88% of maintained secondary schools.

98% of local schools in Harrow have had their funding cut since 2010. In total this means a decrease in school spending power for schools in Harrow of £32.9 million and a change in per pupil funding of £943.


Gareth Thomas MP said:

“In Parliament, I recently referenced my old primary school, Pinner Park – an excellent school that is one of Harrow’s largest primaries but has been let down by drastic cuts of £737,352 in spending power by fourteen years of Conservative Government.

Across Harrow; parents, pupils and teachers are seeing every day the impact of the school funding crisis. Schools are being pushed to the brink with staff desperately trying to plug the gaps in support from a lack of funding. It was not the norm for schools to send out donation pleas to parents when I was growing up and it certainly wasn’t the case under the last Labour Governent. Yet this Government continues to underfund and under-deliver on their responsibility to schools and the nation’s children and young people.

“I am calling on the Prime Minister to urgently address the funding crisis and start investing in this and future generations of young people.

“I encourage residents from my constituency and neighbouring constituencies in Harrow  to look at the School Cuts website to see how schools in Harrow have been damaged by Government cuts.”


Video of Gareth Thomas addressing cuts to his primary school in Parliament:



Editor’s note:


The School Cuts website was established in 2016. The website shows the impact of Government funding decisions on every mainstream school in England. The website, and ensuing campaigns, has proven highly effective at highlighting the plight of schools beset by years of underfunding, resulting in an extra £21bn of investment in schools.


Our terminology of ‘mainstream school’ includes all state funded schools. It does not include nursery schools, special schools, pupil referral units, alternative provision (AP), sixth form colleges, further education colleges, and hospital schools.


Whilst this analysis is based on mainstream schools, many non-mainstream schools are facing an even tighter financial squeeze due to the nature of their staffing structure and we therefore urge the Government to pay particularly close attention to their funding in 2024/25.




Lines from the joint press release that you may wish to use –


Daniel Kebede, General Secretary of the National Education Union, said:

“The effects of fourteen years of austerity imposed by this Conservative government are clear for all to see. We have the largest class sizes in Europe. In September, children in more than 100 schools couldn’t start school on time because ceilings were falling in and posing a risk to their lives. And this year, yet again, the Government has failed to hit its teacher training recruitment targets for almost all secondary subjects. This neglect of education services has failed an entire generation of children; the Government must not fail another. We need to see substantial investment.”


Geoff Barton, General Secretary of the Association of School and College Leaders, said:

“The School Cuts website lays bare the impact of the Government’s underfunding of schools. The reality is that there are school and college leaders across the country, working from buildings that are no longer fit for purpose and being forced to calculate what extra cuts they are going to have to make in order to balance their budgets. The government must make education a priority, giving schools and colleges the investment they urgently need while addressing the worsening condition of buildings and the growing crisis in special educational needs funding.”


Paul Whiteman, General Secretary of school leaders’ union NAHT, said:

“The Prime Minister pledged to make education his main funding priority in every spending review at the last Conservative Party Conference, but there was no sign of this happening in the subsequent Autumn Statement. Many schools are struggling to finance the basics, let alone to deal with crumbling buildings and support the growing numbers of children with special educational needs and disabilities. It is imperative to bring an end to more than a decade of under-investment in schools and real-terms funding cuts. We need to see a sustained commitment from government to ensure all schools are equipped with the resources they need to offer all pupils a fulfilling and safe education.”


Sam Henson, Deputy Chief Executive, National Governance Association said:

“Our members governing in all settings, from MATs to maintained schools, are telling us that balancing the budget is their biggest governance challenge. The growing difficulty in keeping their schools and trusts financially sustainable, and the impossible choices often required to do so, is causing volunteers huge stress and worry. Substantial investment is needed to protect high-quality education, and meet the needs of vulnerable pupils.”


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