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Cash strapped schools are asking parents for money

first_img Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings. Kevin Courtney, general secretary of the NUT, said: “The Secretary of State has to address this issue with urgency. Parents, teachers, headteachers or school staff will not let this issue lie.”He added: “Ahead of the local elections Government would do well to remember the impact school funding had on the voting intentions of the public during the general election.”Over half (55 per cent) of teachers said that class sizes have risen since last year, although some acknowledged that this was due to rising pupil numbers.  A fifth of cash-strapped schools are now asking parents for money, a survey by the National Union of Teachers (NUT) suggests. Most schools ask parents to give what they can without specifying an amount, but in some cases schools ask for a regular monthly payment. Almost half of teachers said their school has asked parents to pay for particular items such as materials for art of design and technology classes, according to a poll of 900 teachers. Both primary and secondary schools have started charging parents for attendance at school concerts and sports days, teachers said. Some schools have even started accepting advertising on school premises, the survey found. Earlier this week, MPs warned that  academies are using taxpayers’ money to pay “unjustifiably” high salaries to senior staff.  In some cases, academy trusts are failing to prove that hefty pay packages are appropriate, according to the public accounts committee. In a report, MPs argue that if pay is left unchallenged, there is a risk that high wages become accepted as the norm, which will pile more pressure on school budgets.Academies are state schools that are not under local authority control, but run by trusts. The PAC report said: “Some academy trusts appear to be using public money to pay excessive salaries.”last_img read more