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Local authorites to be refunded for academy cuts

Almost £60m is to be returned to local authorities from funding for academies, the Department for Education has confirmed.

Around 30 councils threatened to seek a judicial review of the amount of money the Government had deducted to reflect the growth in academies, as the number of academies varies across the country but the funding cut was uniform.

In total, local authorities have had their funding cut by £413m over two years. The DfE is now re-examining funding arrangements.

In a written ministerial statement on Tuesday, the department stated that it would refund any local authority “where the amount deducted from formula grant for 2011-12 and 2012-13 was greater than it would have been had the deduction been based on the number of pupils in academies in that authority over each of the two financial years”.

David Simmonds, chairman of the LGA’s Children and Young People Board, told the Financial Times: “We want to see equality of funding across all types of schools, but under the current system that is not the case. Instead, we have two-tier funding with local taxpayers effectively subsidising the roll-out of academies.

“There are still questions around the funding methodology for 2013-14 and beyond. We are concerned that flawedWhitehall calculations could see the local government store cupboard being raided once more for hundreds of millions of pounds.”

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