Olympics 2012 inner city' kids lose out on schools cash
PUBLISHED: 16:00 21 October 2009 | UPDATED: 15:06 05 October 2010
POVERTY campaigners are calling for the Government to give children in one of the East London 2012 Olympics host' boroughs "a fairer start" in life. Some 40 organisations in Newham have launched a campaign today to scrap the area's second priority' status
POVERTY campaigners are calling for the Government to give children in one of the East London 2012 Olympics 'host' boroughs "a fairer start" in life.
Some 40 organisations across Newham, where the Olympics complex is being built, have launched a campaign today (Wednesday) to scrap the area's 'second priority' status.
Newham is considered by some Government bodies such as the Office of National Statistics and the Prime Minister's Strategy unit as a deprived 'inner city' location because of its poverty.
But it falls technically outside the 'Inner London' zone when it comes to Whitehall cash for schools, campaigners point out.
The local education authority gets £1,000 less for each child than in neighbouring Tower Hamlets and Hackney, both 'Olympic' boroughs inside the 'Inner London' boundary.
"It is clear Newham misses out," said the charity End Child Poverty's Liz Thorne. "Children would have the resources to achieve more if it had the funding its schools deserve."
Newham gets 'outer London' grants of around £5,000 for each child, while Tower Hamlets gets almost £6,300 and Hackney nearly £6,200.
Yet Newham is legally obliged to pay teaching staff 'Inner London' rates, say campaigners.
Newham Council could pay for 700 more teachers and 300 teaching assistants if it got the same cash, the Town Hall stresses, adding 11 extra staff for each school.
The Government has set up a group headed by Children's Minister Dawn Primarolo and Schools Minister Vernon Coaker to look into a shaking-up the school funding system over the coming months.