Decision details

Schools Funding Formula Changes

Decision Maker: Cabinet Member - Children and Young People

Decision status: Approved

Is Key decision?: No

Is subject to call in?: Yes


In line with DFE guidance amendments are to be made to the funding formula that supports the distribution of resources to schools.


The Cabinet Member agrees that:


A) The minimum per pupil funding level for secondary schools will increase to £4,800 and the minimum per pupil funding level for primary schools will increase to £3,500. The DFE have also introduced a new minimum level of £5,100 for KS4 only schools.

This means that those schools that will receive a minimum per pupil funding allocation less than these levels under a fully implemented NFF would have their minimum per pupil funding brought up to these levels in 2019-20. However, as the DFE have capped NFF allocations to the LA, the total funding allocated does not fully support these suggested minimum per pupil funding values. It is therefore anticipated that the minimum per pupil funding values used in our local formula will need to be scaled back to avoid any overspend in the schools block funding allocated to the LA.



B) The DFE will introduce a new funding floor factor to enable local authorities to reflect the NFF calculation of a minimum overall 1% per pupil increase in per pupil funding in 2019-20 compared to the 2017-18 per pupil funding baselines provided by the DFE. This effectively overrides the MFG.


The Minimum per pupil Funding guarantee (MFG) in the local formula for 2019-20 will be over written by the introduction of a funding floor factor above.

Local authorities will however continue to have the flexibility to set a local MFG between minus 1.5% and plus 0.5% per pupil for 2019-20.

The LA are proposing an MFG of a 0% change in pupil funding in 2019-20 compared to 2018-19 in view of the introduction of the new funding floor factor.


C) The DFE have enabled local authorities to mirror the sparsity taper in local formula that has been used in the NFF funding formula calculations. The LA believe this should be followed to maintain the integrity of the Local Formula in line with the NFF


D) Local authorities will no longer be able to set a primary weighting for low prior attainment because all results will have been assessed under the new framework and there is therefore no longer a need to use a weighting. The DFE have also have reduced the primary low prior attainment NFF factor value to £1,022 to balance the increase in the cohort.


E) The DFE will allow Local authorities to set a cap on gains so that schools gain the greater of either 3% of their 2018 to 2019 baseline, or 20% of their remaining gains. The LA is proposing to remove the cap on gains for 2019-20 to allow the funds available to flow through to schools during the transition to the NFF.


F) The English as an additional language (EAL) factor is allocated for pupils identified in the October census with a first language other than English for up to three years after they enter the statutory school system.

Local authorities can choose to use indicators based on one, two, or three years, and there can be separate unit values for primary and secondary

B&NES has used the indicator based on one year and propose to change this to the indicator based on three years as the DFE have used this indicator in the national funding formula.


Reasons for the decision:

The decision to adopt the changes is in line with the consultation responses and the recommendation of the Schools Forum.


Alternative options considered:

Various options considered but mainly to leave the formula unchanged from current form or follow the DFE guidance in preparation for a National Funding Formula.

Publication date: 03/01/2019

Date of decision: 03/01/2019

Effective from: 11/01/2019

Accompanying Documents: