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Pupils: Per Capita Costs

Volume 496: debated on Monday 5 October 2009

To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families what the average expenditure per school pupil in (a) primary and (b) secondary schools in each local education authority area in England was in each year since 1997; and what the per pupil funding from his Department was in each area in each such year. (291110)

[holding answer 14 September 2009]: The Department collects figures of public expenditure from local authorities via the Section 52 Outturn statements. The Department does not hold figures by constituency. The Department has placed the relevant information which shows the per school pupil expenditure for primary and secondary schools in each local authority in England from 1997-98 to 2007-08 in the House libraries.

Further information on the public expenditure figures can be found in the Section 52 Outturn statements which the Department publishes on our website at:

Per pupil revenue funding figures for pupils aged 3-19 for all local authorities for years 1997-98 to 2005-06 have been placed in the House Libraries.

Please note that these figures are in cash terms and that have not provided figures for City of London or Isles of Scilly:

The revenue per pupil figures shown in the following table is taken from the new Dedicated Schools Grant (DSG). They are not comparable with those for the years 1997-98 to 2005-06 because the introduction of the DSG in 2006-07 fundamentally changed how local authorities are funded.

The 1997-98 to 2005-06 figures are based on Education Formula Spending (EFS) which formed the education part of the Local Government Finance Settlement, plus various grants. This was an assessment of what local authorities needed to fund education rather than what they spent. The DSG is based largely on an authority’s previous spending. In addition, the DSG has a different coverage to EFS. EFS comprised a schools block and an LEA block (to cover LEA central functions) whereas DSG only covers the school block. LEA block items are still funded through DCLG’s Local Government Finance Settlement but education items cannot be separately identified. Consequently, there is a break in the Department’s time series as the two sets of data are not comparable. An alternative time series is currently under development.

To provide a comparison for 2006-07 DSG, the Department have isolated the schools block equivalent funding in 2005-06; as described above this does not represent the totality of ‘education’ funding in that year.

The per pupil revenue funding figures for years 2005-06 to 2008-09 for all local authorities are provided in the following table. The figures for all funded pupils aged 3-19 have been placed in the House Libraries and are in cash terms.