SDLP Education Spokesperson Daniel McCrossan MLA has raised serious concerns about the Department for Education’s core programme for re-engaging pupils after long periods of missed learning during the Covid-19 crisis.
The Engage programme provides additional resource to schools but the application of the funding formula has resulted in gross disparities in the per pupil funding available across the North with some schools receiving £100 per pupil while others receive less than £10 per pupil.
Daniel McCrossan said:
“At the Education Committee today, I raised concerns about the application of Engage funding to schools and the disparity in the per pupil resource that each would receive. There seems to have been a decision made to address deprivation by drawing an arbitrary line at the average number of children in receipt of free school meals with no further consideration for the challenges schools face.
“I understand that the Minister wants to get money out quickly but the result is that one school in my constituency will receive almost £100 per pupil while another, with similar problems related to deprivation, will receive around £35 per pupil. That cannot be an equitable position.
“I will continue to raise this matter with the Minister and his officials to get the best result for all of our young people.”
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