According to information obtained by the Anti-Academies Alliance from a chair of governors of a local primary school, a new free school, Stour Valley Community School, in Clare, Suffolk, received funding for all of its planned capacity regardless of the actual numbers of children it had. In education jargon it was fully funded to its PAN (Planned Admission Number).
All other schools are funded on the basis of the number of pupils they actually have on roll and this per pupil funding makes up the vast majority of all school budgets.
When Stour Valley School opened in September 2011, its capacity across the three years of entry was 324, though it actually had 190 pupils. Taking the average £5,325 that a Suffolk secondary school gets per place this means it received a total of £713,550 in additional funding for pupils that the school simply didn’t have. Apparently this is to continue for two years, making over £1.4 million.
The chair of governors’ blog is available at http://shar.es/qvprq ■