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Energy Use

Volume 454: debated on Tuesday 5 December 2006

To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills what estimate he has made of the impact of energy prices on school budgets. (106620)

[holding answer 30 November 2006]: The funding that individual schools receive via their school budget shares is a matter for individual local authorities to decide locally through their own local funding formulae (subject to satisfying the minimum funding guarantee for schools).

Over the past three financial years (2003-04 to 2005-06) the cost pressure attributed to expenditure on energy has been increasing. Expenditure by schools on energy as a percentage of total gross school expenditure (less staffing costs) has increased from 5.0 per cent. of the total in 2003-04 to 6.2 per cent. of the total in 2005-06. Energy costs, in particular, increased by 16.1 per cent. between 2003-04 and 2004-05 and by 28.5 per cent. between 2004-05 and 2005-06.

Of the increases in total gross expenditure (less staffing costs) by schools, 8.8 per cent. can be attributed to increases in energy costs between 2003-04 and 2004-05 and 15.3 per cent. to increases in energy costs between 2004-05 and 2005-06.