Cash axe anguish

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FEWER lessons will be on the timetable and fewer staff will be on the payroll as Tring School faces up to budget cuts.

The Mortimer Hill school is being forced to make ‘drastic cuts’ after having to slash its budget and face more than an 80 per cent cut in the capital funding used to maintain the building.

School chiefs have tackled the budget reductions by not replacing five teachers and five support staff who have left within the last year, leaving 190 staff for 1,500 students.

Headteacher Julia Wynd said: “It has been really disappointing. I did not want, in my final year, to be saying I was cutting back the teaching staff at a fantastic school.”

The changes mean the school can no longer cover the cost of the number of taught lessons for each A level course and has had to scrap its government and politics course.

Mrs Wynd, who is due to retire from her post this summer, said no course would be cut if students need it for university qualification, but warned that more sixth form finance cuts are expected next year.

She said: “We have to look carefully and make sure we are offering an economically-viable curriculum at sixth form, otherwise the rest of the school is subsidising the sixth form teaching.”

The reduction in capital funding could also see less money going into children’s education.

Mrs Wynd said: “The danger is we have to take money allocated for the children’s education to fund the building.

“I understand the school has to face its fair share of cuts, but it is very difficult to maintain and improve high standards when we have these cuts.”

The school is also making students aware of how they can cut costs by printing less and turning lights off.

Mrs Wynd said the school is given less funding by the government because it is in an affluent area, but stressed that, by being frugal, the school was within budget at the end of the last financial year.

She said: “We are still positive. We need to move forward and will be working hard to accommodate the cuts and plan for the future.

“I would like parents to have faith in myself and the board of governors that we are managing the budget and being very thoughtful and sensitive of the cuts we are making, but it is getting very difficult.”