#029 – Natalie Perera – School funding

20th December 2018

In this episode, Iesha speaks with Natalie Perera – Executive Director and Head of Research at Education Policy Institute about school funding and the implications of National Funding Formula for schools.

In this episode Natalie and Iesha:

    • Explain Natalie’s role and what drew her to it
    • Examine why education is important to Natalie
    • Talk about Natalie’s background as a civil servant and how that experience has helped in her current role
    • Discuss the school funding landscape up until 2016
    • Explain the Dedicated Schools Grant and how it locked in some previous geographical inequalities
    • Respond to thoughts on why the previous coalition government and the current government felt under pressure from local authorities to introduce changes which eventually led to the National Funding Formula
    • Look at why the growing number of academies added to the pressure to reform school funding
    • Contemplate why London has traditionally seen higher per pupil funding than other regions
    • Discuss why it has taken the government so long to implement a National Funding Formula
    • Break down the National Funding Formula and what it means for different types of schools/pupils/areas
    • Talk about problems the National Funding Formula solves, creates, exacerbates and discuss potential solutions to these issues
    • Highlights if there may be areas the National Funding Formula has not addressed
    • Consider whether the conservative manifesto pledge “no school would lose as a result of the new formula”, holds true, and why 1000 headteachers who marched on Westminster in September don’t think it does
    • Delve into the EPI report’s conclusions about the impact of the National Funding Formula on deprivation
    • Detail why Croydon and Merton are the only London boroughs to gain from the National Funding Formula changes
    • List what actionable points Natalie would like people to take away from this discussion
    • Discuss the company name change from Centre Forum to EPI and what advice Natalie would give on name changes, knowing what she knows now
    • Geek out about the recent Cosmopolitan article quoting a report from EPI- how that came about and why it is important for think tanks to be covered outside of political and mainstream news media

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Music credits:

‘Oui’ by Simon Mathewson and ‘Jump for joy’ by Scott Holmes both from http://freemusicarchive.org