New Vice Chair welcomed by f40 fair funding campaign

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Fair funding for schools campaign group, f40, today announced the appointment of Laura Smith MP as its new Labour Vice Chair.

Laura, a former teacher who represents the Crewe & Nantwich constituency in Cheshire, will play a leading role on f40’s behalf in Parliament and coordinate activities among Labour MPs representing f40 and other poorly funded areas.

f40 chair, Cllr James McInnes, who is also Lead Member for Children’s Services in Devon, said: “I am delighted to welcome Laura as our new Labour Vice Chair and as a member of our Executive Committee. Laura may have only entered Parliament in 2017 but very quickly she has established a reputation for speaking up for injustice and unfairness. In Parliament, and in her constituency, she has a great track record of fighting for fairer funding for schools and for education in general. She will be a great asset to the group as its campaign for improvements to the recently introduced national funding formula move forward.

“Laura represents a constituency where the local authority suffers from inadequate and unfair funding compared to others elsewhere. By taking on a high-profile role in f40, she is clearly demonstrating her determination to fight for a fairer deal for the children in schools in her constituencies, as well as across the country.”

Laura Smith said: “It is an honour to have been invited to become the Labour Vice Chair of the f40 campaign group. As a parent and former teacher, fair funding for schools is one of my main interests and I am determined to see improvements made to the new national funding formula launched by the government this financial year.

“Before I became an MP, I was a local mum campaigning for fairer funding for all schools. Because of that campaign, residents in our local authority area submitted more responses than in any other part of the country during the last government consultation. This is a hugely important issue to my constituents in Crewe & Nantwich who are simply asking that children here get the education they deserve and their fair share of the funding.

“Whilst welcoming the changes to the national funding formula, the fact is that there remains a massive shortfall in the funding available to schools. In addition, there’s a shortfall in the High Needs block this year, meaning children in schools across England may not get what they are entitled to and their local authorities are facing a financial crisis.

“There is unanimous recognition among f40 member authorities and many MPs of all parties that there is still more work to do to tackle the continuing unfairness within the system and I hope that I can play a constructive part in achieving further beneficial change.”