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Balls warns that budget cuts will force further federations

30 November 2009

The Schools Secretary said he will not instruct schools on how to manage their budgets but has warned they have hard choices ahead if they are to protect the frontline from the imminent financial squeeze. Ed Balls has said that if schools want to keep the 160,000 extra teaching staff proposed they need to consider cost-saving measures now.

The timely release of the DCSF consultation document 'Securing Our Future - Using Our Resources Well' starts the debate on how schools should consider making these cuts. But with Ed Balls giving clear signals to schools that federating is a cost-effective method that will safeguard the new teaching posts, it seems he is in fact giving the instructions he denies.

Federations can certainly save money through shared staff, but successful federations arise out of successful collaborations and are not forged from budgetary concerns alone. Will schools taking alternative measures be deemed to have insufficient regard for their budgets?

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