Gross expenditure: Financial spending by LA maintained schools, before any deductions are made.
Net expenditure: Financial spending following deductions of income from catering, supply teacher insurance and community-focussed income.
Gross expenditure reported by LA maintained schools has increased, reversing the trend seen in previous years. Expenditure has otherwise decreased each year since 2011-12, driven primarily by school conversion to academy status and therefore reduction in the number of schools included within this publication. In the latest year, this decrease in the number of LA maintained schools slowed.
In the financial year 2021-22, LA maintained schools' gross expenditure was £23.9 billion, 4.0% higher than in 2020-21 when total expenditure was £23.0 billion. This included:
- £11.7 billion (49.0%) spent on teaching staff (including teachers, supply and agency teachers),
- £4.4 billion (18.4%) spent on education support staff,
- £3.2 billion (13.4%) spent on premises and occupation related costs,
- £2.5 billion (10.5%) spent on supplies and services,
Last year, due to the changed situation in schools as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, schools utilised their finances differently to other years. For example, lower spend on supply teaching, learning resources, catering and community-focussed spend.
In 2021-22, as schools return to more usual ways of operating post-pandemic, expenditure in these categories has generally increased but, for most categories remains lower than 2019-20:
- Supply teachers, a 49.7% increase from 2020-21, similar in cash terms to 2019-20,
- Staff development and training, a 37.4% increase from 2020-21 but 13.1% lower than in 2019-20,
- Learning resources, a 37.2% increase from 2020-21 but 7.6% lower than in 2019-20,
- Catering supplies and staff, a 23.9% increase from 2020-21 but 2.7% lower than in 2019-20,
- Energy costs, a 15.7% increase from 2020-21 but 0.9% lower than in 2019-20. Please note that this period relates to the year ending 31 March 2022 - prior to current energy price rises.
Community spend increased by 2.1% but remains 18.2% lower than in 2019-20.
Full details of all school expenditure can be found in Table 2.
In 2021-22, £621.8 million was spent on supply teaching costs. This includes:
- £106.9 million on supply teaching staff employed directly by the school. This represents a 44.3% increase from 2020-21 but 3.6% lower than in 2019-20.
- £415.0 million on agency supply teaching staff, 51.2% higher than in 2020-21 and 1.0% higher than in 2019-20.
- £99.9 million on supply teacher insurance. This is 3.0% lower than in 2020-21 and 7.7% lower than in 2019-20. Supply teacher insurance includes premiums paid to insurers for supply teacher cover and to the LA for centrally managed supply schemes.
This total spend on supply teachers and agency supply teachers was similar in cash terms to that of 2019-20 and has returned to usual levels following the pandemic. The spend on supply teacher insurance has declined each year since 2015-16.
Spend on supply teaching varies by phase. Spend per pupil on supply teaching was highest in pupil referral units. It accounted for 4.2% of all expenditure in 2021-22 and totalled £1,219 per pupil - the majority of this for agency supply teachers. This compares to:
- Special schools - spend per pupil on supply teachers was £693 and accounted for 2.8% of all expenditure in 2021-22.
- Secondary schools -spend per pupil on supply teachers was £130 and accounted for 2.0% of all expenditure.
- Primary schools - spend per pupil on supply teachers was £160 and accounted for 2.7% of all expenditure.
- Nursery schools - spend per pupil on supply teachers was £180 and accounted for 1.7% of all expenditure.
In 2021-22, LA maintained schools spent £4.4 billion on education support staff. Education support staff include teaching assistants, who are more widely employed in primary schools, pupil referral units and special schools.
18.6% of total gross expenditure in primary schools and 33.4% in special schools was spent on education support staff. For pupil referral units, 17.9% was spent on education support staff. This compares to 10.3% in secondary schools. These percentages are similar to 2020-21.
Higher supply teacher costs and higher education support staff costs both contribute to the higher spending per pupil seen in pupil referral units and special schools. However, places in both pupil referral units and special schools attract high needs funding as additional costs are needed to support the needs of pupils placed in these settings. Hence the expenditure per pupil is consistently higher across years for both pupil referral units and special schools.