Today (Wednesday 20 November) the Liberal Democrats will announce plans to spend £10 billion more a year on schools and hire 20,000 more teachers by the end of the next Parliament. This comes ahead of the Liberal Democrat manifesto launch later today.
A Liberal Democrat government will reverse frontline school cuts since 2015 with an emergency cash injection of £4.6 billion next year.
By 2024/25, the party will spend £10.6 billion more on schools than in 2019/20. This is more than the Conservatives have offered in every year of the Parliament.
Liberal Democrats will use this money to boost teaching numbers by 20,000 over five years. A Liberal Democrat government will attract and retain teachers by increasing starting salaries to £30,000 and guaranteeing all teachers a pay rise of at least 3% a year over the next Parliament.
The funding also includes an increase in support for children with special educational needs or a disability, and money to provide high-quality professional development for teachers.
In addition, Liberal Democrats will invest in the fabric of our schools, setting aside £7 billion over five years to build classrooms fit for the future.
The party will allocate £10 billion of the £50 billion Remain Bonus – the boost to the public finances that would result from stopping Brexit – to increase schools funding.
Ahead of the announcement, Jo Swinson, Leader of the Liberal Democrats said:
“This is an investment in our children’s future. Our schools should be world class, helping every child make the most of the challenges ahead.
But instead, they are trailing behind. The Conservatives have cut school funding to the bone and children have paid the price, especially those with the most complex needs.
It is disgraceful that some schools feel they have no choice but to ask parents to chip in for supplies, and are closing early on Friday to balance the books.
Liberal Democrats will build a brighter future for every child. By stopping Brexit, we can spend £10 billion of our Remain Bonus on reversing school cuts and hiring 20,000 more teachers – so that pupils can leave school happy, healthy and with the skills they need to succeed in life.
This just one of the fantastic policies from our manifesto that will help build a brighter future for our country."
In addition, Layla Moran, Liberal Democrat Shadow Education Secretary said:
“Headteachers are crying out for more staff. But too many are leaving the profession because they are overworked and underpaid.
The Conservatives only care about teaching children to be tested. High-stakes Ofsted inspections and SATs tests are placing an unacceptable burden on pupils and teachers alike.
Highly valued, well trained teachers are the most important resource we have in our education system. So Liberal Democrats will recruit 20,000 more teachers and give them the pay and support they deserve.
We will increase salaries by 3% a year, guarantee high-quality training, stop political meddling in the curriculum and end teaching to the test. Let’s trust teachers to give children the best possible start in life.”