A SCHOOL began the new term by moving to reassure parents — after saying just before Christmas that it faced its “toughest financial challenge yet”.
Wickersley School’s deputy headteacher, Amanda Crane, said this week that the school was “coping well” — three weeks after an email was sent to parents outlining the financial headache caused by Chancellor Philip Hammond’s announcement in the 2018 Budget that each school in England would receive £50,000 to pay for “little extras”.
Ms Crane said: “We sent out an email to parents so they understood the financial pressures we as a school face.
“The scale of cuts are not widely understood and it is important information to share.
“Sadly £50,000 for each school for extra bits needed doesn’t even cover it.”
The email to parents, which was also shared on the school’s Facebook page, stated that the school was struggling to bridge the financial shortfall and trying everything to ensure there was no impact on the pupils and their education.
“We are trying to reduce the cost of spending and doing the best we can,” Ms Crane added.
“I think we are dealing with it all very well — but with more funding cuts we have to make hard decisions, but we’re hopeful it won’t come to that.”
Ms Crane admitted that she couldn’t say what might happen in the future — but said the school was “not concerned” about its viability and insisting there was no threat of the school closing.
The email to parents told of the school’s strategy to raise “desperately needed funds” and asked for parents to get involved with ideas or assistance.
The school, a registered charity, had “never before” needed to use this charitable status to raise money.
Many parents reacted to the school’s Facebook post with sympathy, putting its struggles down to government fundings cuts, and offered to help.
“We are going to be setting up a parents forum to help raise funds for the extra bits we now can’t afford,” Ms Crane said.
“For example if we need additional art materials or set furniture for the drama department
“A lot of schools have PTAs and we’ve not had one for a number of years, so it’s probably a good place to start to raise money.
“But I am really happy to see we’ve had a number of supportive parents contact us who are keen to get involved.”