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#Floss4Funding protest over school spending cuts

Parents, children and organisations across the region are #Flossing4funding Photo: Save Our Schools

Over 20 schools in Brighton and Hove, children, parents and teachers are taking to the dance floor in the country’s first ever mass 'floss' protest against school funding cuts.

Schools across the region will stage mass Floss4Funding actions, with many other groups expected to take part in spontaneous actions on the day.

Tens, if not hundreds, of thousands of people are expected to take part across the country, showing unity and determination in the on-going battle to get the government to acknowledge, and then reverse the cuts.

Parents want to draw attention to the damaging impact that eight per cent cuts to pupil funding since 2010 has been having on state schools across England. They also want to call on the Chancellor to use the budget to provide a fair and sustainable funding settlement.

Campaigners say that cuts have led to:

  • Increased class sizes – with record numbers of pupils now taught in classes of over 30
  • Reductions in teaching and support staff – figures show that there are 66,000 more kids in state schools in England this year compared to last, yet compared to last year
  • There are 10,800 fewer staff in our school – including over 5,000 fewer teachers, over 2,700 fewer teaching assistants and over 2,000 fewer support staff.
  • Less support for children and young people, including those with special educational needs or English as an additional language
  • A narrower curriculum
  • Cut-backs in essential resources and out-of-school-activities.
  • Increasing numbers of schools appealing to parents for regular cash donations to make up the shortfall.

However, the Department for Education maintains that the UK is still the third highest spending, on education, in the world.

The comment from the DfE comes after a national day of action where over 2,000 headteachers demonstrated outside Downing Street, and the parliamentary event, where children from round the country reduced MPs to tears with their stories of how the cuts are affecting them personally.

“Our schools are really up against it. Heads across the country are saying they cannot make ends meet. As parents we see what takes place in our schools. "We swap stories about the loss of staff and emails asking for more donations. We are sick and tired of Ministers misleading us about school funding. "They need to listen and they need to act. Starting with the budget this autumn. "Enough is enough, our schools need more money and we owe it to our children to provide a future for them and for our country”.

– Cath Fisher, Save our Schools

“On the same day that children went to Westminster to tell the truth about school cuts, the Prime Minister herself repeated the misleading claims that have already been refuted by the UK Statistics Authority. "If words can’t convince the government to stop the propaganda wars and act now to save our schools, then perhaps many thousands of dancing feet can. "We won’t stop until our children get the education they deserve.”

– Alison Ali, Save our Schools

If you want to show your support, please send us your best flossing moves to itvnewsmeridian@itv.com or go to our Facebook and Twitter pages.