Labour Research October 2012

Equality news

Coalition cuts hit ethnic minorities’ education

Inequality in educational provision is set to increase for ethnic minority pupils, according to research by the NASUWT teachers’ union.

Over a third (37%) of teachers and headteachers who took part in the survey reported that resources for ethnic minority achievement and English as an additional language provision were dwindling in their area, with resources being increasingly diverted towards other activities.

Funding changes in September 2011 removed dedicated funding for the Ethnic Minority Achievement Grant, incorporating the funding into the Dedicated School Grant. This ended the requirement for schools to spend this money solely on supporting the needs of ethnic minority pupils and students with English as an additional language.

As a result, nearly a third (32%) of headteachers said support for these students has become more difficult to access over the last year.

The outlook for the future remains gloomy, with a significant number (46%) of teachers and headteachers believing that funding for these services will decline further in the coming years.

Half of headteachers said the pressure on schools to provide help to ethnic minority pupils has increased in the last year, and 65% stated that current resources were insufficient to meet this need.

Chris Keates, general secretary of the NASUWT, said: “Once again the casualties of the coalition government’s education reforms and austerity measures are the children and young people that need the most support.”