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Budget 2018: Hammond faces backlash for saying funding for schools will buy ‘little extras’ like whiteboards


Philip Hammond has been accused of being “condescending” and “disrespectful” in his defence of funding for the “little extras” in faculties – which he says will purchase some whiteboards or computer systems.

The chancellor has confronted widespread backlash from lecturers, mother and father and unions after he mentioned within the Budget one-off £400m bonus would assist faculties “purchase the little extras they want”.

Mr Hammond defended the pledge on Tuesday by saying he believed the money can be “helpful” to headteachers who wanted to pay for just a few extra whiteboards or some new laptops.

The chancellor mentioned many colleges can be “very joyful” to obtain the “good gesture” – which is round £10,000 per main college and £50,000 per secondary college in England.

However his defence  provoked extra anger from the career, who’ve been calling for more funding amid cuts to very important sources – together with lecturers and particular academic wants assist.

Critics have been utilizing the hashtag “littleextras” on Twitter to sentence the chancellor’s remarks – with some highlighting that more cash was given to fixing potholes within the Finances than to varsities.

On Mr Hammond’s money for whiteboards, Liz Allen, an English trainer, mentioned: “Simply after I thought he couldn’t be any extra condescending and short-sighted.”

In the meantime, mother or father group Save our Faculties mentioned: “Is he intentionally trolling all of us? To supply this quantity while core budgets are down eight per cent, buildings are crumbling, topics are being reduce, college employees are being grossly underpaid, SEND assist is falling aside is completely disrespectful.”

When requested what he meant by “little extras” on the BBC Radio four At this time programme on Tuesday, Mr Hammond mentioned it may very well be used to purchase “a few whiteboards or some laptop computer computer systems.”

“Having a cheque for £50,000 I’d have thought would have been fairly helpful for most colleges,” he added.

“It was merely giving again a bit of little bit of the cash we’ve got saved this yr in order that faculties can purchase the odd little piece of equipment that they want,” Mr Hammond added on Good Morning Britain. 

“I believe that may be a good gesture. Most of the faculties I do know can be very joyful to have £50,000 and even £10,000, to purchase a whiteboard or a few computer systems”.

However Paul Whiteman, normal secretary of headteachers’ union NAHT, instructed The Unbiased: “College leaders see each day the impression of funding cuts to kids’s training and to their futures.

“To dismiss these considerations with a ‘good gesture’ is inexcusably patronising and betrays a basic ignorance of the truth of the funding disaster dealing with faculties.”

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Headteacher Jules White, who organised the anti-funding cuts march final month, mentioned: “While any cash for classroom refurbishments or computer systems is to be welcomed, headteachers really feel that the large points referring to long run cuts haven’t been addressed by the federal government.”

Faculties are struggling to fulfill the complicated wants of some college students – together with kids who’ve skilled home violence, household breakdown, and psychological well being points, he mentioned.

Mr White added: “Dad and mom and faculties ask for assist and have been glibly supplied just a few thousand kilos for some ‘little extras’.  This doesn’t appear to be a response which is both proportionate or in step with the nationwide temper.”

Angela Rayner, the shadow training secretary, mentioned: “The chancellor has reduce billions from our faculties and now he’s providing them a ‘little further’ whiteboard.

“This reveals how desperately out of contact the Tories are when tens of hundreds of lecturers, educating assistants and assist employees have been reduce and headteachers are begging mother and father for cash for fundamental provides.

“In addition to fixing their crumbling buildings, our faculties urgently want extra employees and fundamental gear like books and stationery.”


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