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EDITIONS
Sunday, 14 July, 2002, 16:24 GMT 17:24 UK
Funding hope for schools
Children in a school library
Anything less than an extra 12bn will be disappointing

Education may be the big winner in this spending review, but will it be getting all it needs?

The benchmarks are already set down.

In Labour's first Comprehensive Spending Review in 1998, education won an extra 9.6 billion over three years. In the last review, in July 2000, Gordon Brown gave out an extra 11.9bn.

So, anything less than an extra 12 - 13bn will be regarded as a disappointment.

More teachers

Head teachers' leaders say even that would not be enough.

John Dunford, of the Secondary Heads Association, estimates that the total education budget needs to rise by around 17bn if it is to match the priority the government has given to health spending.

He says the money is needed to boost teacher recruitment, to pay for more classroom assistants, and to ensure there is funding for all comprehensives who want to become specialist schools.

Education spending as % of GDP
UK current plan 5.3% by 2003-04
European average approx. 5.5%
Expectation: UK 5.6% by 2006

Click here for a table comparing countries

The government's plans for future spending are published on 15 July

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