Govt sticks to pledge of protecting school funding

File photo of a pupil after a GCSE English exam. Credit: Chris Radburn/PA Wire

The Chancellor said that the Education Department’s overall budget will increase to £53 billion and that "schools spending will be protected in real terms".

He also announced an "unprecedented increase in the number of Free Schools" by providing funding for 180 new free schools in 2015/16.

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Osborne curbs welfare benefits

The newly unemployed will have to wait at least seven days before they are able to sign on, under a series of changes to welfare benefits announced by the Chancellor. A new welfare cap will be set from 2015 and OAP expats face losing fuel payments.