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BUDGET BONUS FOR ALL SCOTTISH SCHOOLS

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Every state school in Scotland is to receive a share of a£32m Budget bonus to spend on books and equipment, staff ...
Every state school in Scotland is to receive a share of a£32m Budget bonus to spend on books and equipment, staff development or improvements to school buildings.

The extra resources were announced in the Budget statement on 21 March by the chancellor of the exchequer. Details of how the additional money will be distributed in East Dunbartonshire were today revealed by minister for children and education Sam Galbraith on a visit to Lenzie Academy.

Lenzie Academy will receive£50,000 and it will be for the school to decide how to spend these additional resources.

The bonus in East Dunbartonshire is being awarded on the basis of school rolls and will range from£3,000-£9,000 for primary schools and£15,000 for special schools to£30,000-£50,000 for secondary schools. Mr Galbraith said:

'Local authorities in Scotland had already planned to spend an additional 4.3 per cent on education this year. With this£32m Budget bonus, education spending will now increase by 5.5 per cent over last year.

'East Dunbartonshire was budgeting to spend 4.2 per cent more on education this year than in 1999/2000. The additional£710,000 for schools in the area will now bring that percentage increase to 5.4 per cent.

'I am delighted that we can now give details of these very significant extra resources for schools. I know headteachers everywhere are anxious to see what benefits they can bring to their schools. The distribution to schools in other local authority areas will be rolled out by them over the next few weeks.'

He emphasised: 'Within the priority objective of raising standards, schools will have flexibility to decide how they spend the additional resources: they might choose to get more books and equipment, make improvements to buildings, or focus on staff development. They will have the freedom to meet their own particular needs.

'Although for practical reasons payments are being made to local authorities, I have made it clear that I want all schools to get their share as soon as possible.

'These extra resources demonstrate once again our commitment to schools. I know they will respond by doing their best for pupils.'

BACKGROUND

1. The additional money will benefit all local authority primary, secondary and special schools.

2. Local authorities have been asked to verify the basis of the distribution of the grant and payment will be made in a lump sum to local authorities for onward transmission to schools.

3. It will be a condition of payment of this grant that the resources involved will be distributed to schools; that all the schools in the authority's area will benefit from additional resources, and that the resources will be additional to existing or planned school budgets for financial year 2000-01.

4. In distributing the resources to schools, it is suggested that local authorities will be guided by the distribution scale below. Subject to the condition outlined in Note 3 above, authorities are however able to vary these amounts in orderbetter to reflect local priorities and the local implications of such factors as very small schools, recent refurbishment, or other significant recent investments in particular schools or across schools for particular purposes.

5. Ministers wish these resources to be used to the maximum effect on the priority objective of raising standards in schools. They believe that this priority is shared between themselves, education authorities and schools, and that it will be properly reflected in school development plans. They, therefore, consider that within the framework of local priorities identified by the authority it should be schools which determine how these additional resources should be spent, taking account of the school development plan and other relevant issues. Priorities might include books and other educational materials and equipment (including ICT), staff development, and improvements in building fabric. Schools may also wish to take account of needs arising from the National Year of Maths.

6. The basis of distribution is as follows:

Each primary school

with 100 pupils or less£3,000

with more than 100 but less than 201 pupils£6,000

with 201 pupils or more£9,000

Each secondary school

with 600 pupils or less£30,000

with more than 600 but less than 1201 pupils£40,000

with 1201 pupils or more£50,000

Each special school£15,000

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