At a meeting on 18 January 2016, our governors voted reluctantly to start a redundancy process to reduce our staff numbers. This is because the number of students on roll has fallen steadily over the past few years as a result of a lower birth rate in the area a decade or more ago.
In January 2012 we had 1464 students but this has fallen to 1311 (a 10.5% reduction) and as our income from the government is directly related to student numbers this has implications on the amount of funding we receive. The numbers in primary schools have started to increase again and we expect this increase to feed through to our school in about three years’ time.
There have also been significant increases in costs which we have had to absorb within the budget with no additional funding to support this, such as increases in national insurance and pensions.
We have already worked hard to reduce our costs in a number of areas whilst maintaining high standards of education, but it is not possible to make the savings we need without reducing the number of teaching staff we employ.
We have significantly reduced support staff numbers in the past few years and we have made some savings by not replacing teaching staff when they leave but we have reached a point where, in the next financial year we will not be able to balance the books without reducing staff numbers further. By law school budgets are not allowed to operate at a deficit.
The governors are hopeful that we can manage this situation through voluntary redundancies, but we recognise that unless sufficient volunteers come forward, there will have to be some compulsory redundancies.
We realise how difficult and disruptive this could be and we will do our utmost to manage the situation with as little impact to staff and the education of students as possible.
We are supporting affected staff and we’d like to reassure you that our students’ education continues to be our priority as we strive to be outstanding.