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Lichfield Lib Dem councillor accuses Tories of employing “smoke and mirrors” over school funding

The Conservatives have been accused of using “smoke and mirrors” after claims schools in Lichfield and Burntwood would not suffer funding cuts.

Paul Ray and Michael Fabricant

Paul Ray and Michael Fabricant

Last week saw Lichfield MP Michael Fabricant said he was pleased to see the Government listening to his concerns.

Schools Minister Nick Gibb had told the House of Commons funding would be protected.

“No school will see a cut in per-pupil funding under this Government,” he said.

But Liberal Democrat councillor Paul Ray – who stood for the party in the General Election – said the figures did not tell the whole story.

“Michael Fabricant has claimed that there will be no funding cuts for our local schools – and no per pupil funding cuts. Before the election Lichfield and Burntwood schools were facing cuts of between 6% and 18%.

“His statement looks good on the face of it, but it’s all smoke and mirrors.

“Only this week his government announced that it will not increase teachers’ pay above 1% each year. That is not fair on teachers or sustainable for our schools.

“So the Conservatives are not funding schools adequately.”

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Founder of LichfieldLive and editor of the site.


  1. John Griffin

    16th July, 2017 at 4:59 pm

    The same assurances have been given to all Tory councils and MPs, but in real terms (not absolute, and not an AVERAGE but a median spend ) there has been a fall in funding for most schools. The Tories compare funding with the worst in the last two decades, and neglect the spiralling costs of maintaining ancient buildings for many schools. I happen to know a local top state grammar in a safe Tory seat has suffered huge cuts, and is nowhere near the worst off – and those are schools that are higher in the government’s estimation. Fabricant is, as Cllr Ray points out, dealing in smoke and mirrors – as he does in other topics aired in Lichfield Live.

  2. John Griffin

    16th July, 2017 at 5:16 pm

    “…… analysis by the Institute for Fiscal Studies showed that under government spending plans, including the additional £4bn announced in the Conservative election manifesto, spending per pupil was set to decline by a further 3% from 2017 to 2022, making a total 7% reduction from 2015.” (Guardian 16/7)
    Oh, the IFS – a rightwing organisation – must be wrong, Fabricator says so.