Decision details

20/00112 - Changes to the KCC local funding formula for schools

Decision Maker: Cabinet Member for Education and Skills

Decision status: Recommendations Approved

Is Key decision?: Yes

Is subject to call in?: Yes


Proposed Decision


To approve changes to the Kent County Council local funding formula for schools that is used to calculate school budgets from 1 April 2021. 


Delegate authority to the Corporate Director of Children, Young People and Education to make any necessary changes to the Local Funding Formula rates once final affordability is known in January 2021 after provisional school budgets have been calculated



Reason for the decision


·    In response to the Government confirming the additional funding for schools, Kent County Council is set to receive approximately £36m additional funding in 2021-22 for primary and secondary school budgets and approximately £20m for high needs related services. Funding for Early years providers is yet to be confirmed. This decision will confirm how this additional funding will be distributed in line with Government guidelines. 


·    Background: The Government has confirmed the Council continues to be responsible for operating a local funding formula for Kent maintained schools (and this formula is also used by the Education and Skills Funding Agency for calculating Kent academy budgets) during 2021-22 and legislation dictates that any changes to that formula is subject to an all school consultation. The consultation will focus on how we allocate any additional funding and a request to transfer a further 1% from the schools to the high needs block to support inclusive practices in schools (the latter is also subject to Secretary of State approval).


·    Options: the options considered are outlined in the consultation document to schools. Proposed changes to the primary and secondary schools funding formula have been limited to avoid any excessive deviation from the National Funding Formula (NFF) used by Government to allocate school funding to local authorities for distribution to schools. This is in line with previous recommendations from both schools & the Schools Funding Forum who have supported the general principle that “our Local Funding Formula should move towards the NFF, but at the same time continue to utilise local flexibility to address areas of local concern”. Mandatory factors and rates prescribed by Government have also limited proposed options.


·    The decision is linked to achieving the objective “the Children and young people in Kent get the best start in life” within the ‘Increasing Opportunities, Improving Outcomes: Kent County Council’s Strategic Statement (2015-2020)’



As Cabinet Member for Education and Skills, I agree to:


  1. Transfer 1% of the Schools Block (which equates to approximately to £10.0m) into the High Needs Block for 2021-22.


  1. In relation to the Kent local funding formula for schools:


i.              Continue to provide a Primary lump sum rate of £120,000 (before the area cost adjustment).


ii.            Continue with the Falling Roll fund for 2021-22.


iii.           Set the local Minimum Funding Guarantee percentage at 0.5% for 2021-22 for primary and secondary schools.


iv.           Set the Ever 6 Free School Meals Factor for 2021-22 as per the value in the table below:



2021-22 (£ per pupil)







v.            Set the Basic Entitlement Factor for 2021-22 as per the value in the table below:



2021-22 (£ per pupil)









vi.           All other factors within the current local funding formula to be set as per the National Funding Formula (NFF), with most increasing by 3% compared to 2020-21. 


vii.          Update the calculation of the Notional SEN budget to include both the Minimum Per Pupil Level and Minimum Funding Guarantee factors.


  1. Increase the base rate paid to Early Years providers for Free entitlement provision by 6p for three- and four-year olds and 8p for two-year olds. Maintain deprivation supplements at the same rates as 2020-21.


  1. Increase the factor values of the Special Schools funding formula by 3%, and in addition to abolishing the lower place funding rate for pupils with Social, Emotional Mental Health needs. All SEMH places will now be funded at the higher place funding rate.


  1. Delegate authority to the Corporate Director of Children, Young People and Education to make any further necessary changes to funding rates in light of any final affordability issues.


Publication date: 23/02/2021

Date of decision: 23/02/2021

Effective from: 03/03/2021

Accompanying Documents: