Millions of pounds will be invested into Jersey’s education system as part of a major long-term programme of reform, following an independent review of school funding, if States Members agree.
The Minister for Education and the Department for Children, Young People, Education and Skills have set the ambition for Jersey’s education services to be as successful as the best in the world.
The Independent School Funding Review, published today (16 OCT), was commissioned by the Education Minister, in July 2019, to examine Jersey’s 4-18 education funding model.
The review has concluded that additional funding of £8.5m is identified for education in Jersey. Additional pressures in the education system have added a further £3.1m of deficit, resulting in an updated requirement of £11.6m for the education system.
In order to address this underfunding, the Government Plan for 2021 proposes earmarking an additional £7.9m to fund education which will rise to £11.6m over the next four years.
If the Government Plan is approved by States Members, this new funding will help Jersey to embark on an ambitious long-term programme of reform for the education system.
The Big Education Conversation, which was launched in October 2019 to find out what people think about education in Jersey, has also been published today.
Education Minister Senator Tracey Vallois said: “A full and independent review of school funding arrangements was required to ensure that the Common Strategic Policy priority to ‘put children first’ is realised and, specifically, to ensure all children will be able to attend schools that are well-resourced, with good levels of financial support, so that schools can positively support the achievement of the best outcomes for all children.
“One of my main priorities when I became Education Minister was to to embark on a programme of reform across the whole education system, including a significant overhaul of the education law and investment in Early Years.
“We began this by launching the Big Education Conversation to assist us with the vision and priorities for education in Jersey, focusing on early childhood development; educational attainment and progression; and opportunities for school leavers.
“Both reports, published today, provide an analysis of the key challenges facing our education system. The Independent School Funding Review presents a series of recommendations that would collectively form a new model for funding Jersey’s education system.
“These recommendations represent significant changes. Delivery will take time however, consideration and assessment for their impact will have to be carefully managed and some options suggested will need appropriate consultation.
“Fulfilling the ambitions for our education system is a journey that will take a number of years but it is a journey I have been on since I took up this position as Education Minister. I am delighted that the Government has recognised the importance of this and are proposing investment to ensure that we deliver on our commitments in the common strategic policy.
“The Education Reform Programme is a three-year programme of work, which will create the foundations for a high performing education system in Jersey. From these foundations, it is envisaged that we will fully realise the outcomes over the next ten years.”
Government of Jersey News Release.