Agenda item

Agenda item

Dedicated Schools Grant (DSG)

To note the 2013/14 DSG and Growth Fund outturn, and 2014/15 DSG allocation. To note the 2015/16 funding consultation.



The Forum considered a report which provided an update on the 2013/14 Dedicated Schools Grant (DSG) and Growth Fund outturn, the 2014/15 DSG allocation and the 2015/16 funding consultation. 


From 2013/14, the DSG would be split into three notional blocks: Early Year, High Needs and Schools.


The School and Early Years Finance (England) Regulations defines the local authority education budgets for the 2013/14 financial year only.  The Regulators provided simplified local formulae, greater delegation to schools and new arrangements for funding pupils with high needs.


The Minimum Funding Guarantee (MFG) was set at negative 1.5% per pupil

For 2013/14 and 2014/15.


It was noted that the Chief Finance Officer (CFO), annually signed two statements; the Actual deployment (outturn) and the Budget Allocation of the DSG, which confirmed it had been fully deployed in support of the School’s Budget in accordance with the condition of the grant and the School Finance Regulations.


DSG Outturn 2013/14


The Schools Block is based on a per pupil unit of funding of £4,144.47 multiplied by 34,747 pupils as reported on the October 2012 census.


The Early Years Block is based on a unit of funding of £3,979.80 multiplied by 2,421 full time equivalent number of pupils as reported on the January 2013 census.  In April 2014, the block was updated for 7/12ths of the January 2014 pupil numbers to cover the period September 2013 to March 2014.


The High Needs Block is a single block for high needs pupils/student age 0 – 24.  For 2013/14 the block is split into two parts, pre-16 and post-16 (ages 16-24).  The Forum noted that since August 2013, the post-16 funding has combined three previous budgets: SEN block grant, specialist placements funding and the cost of high needs student in Further Education (FE).


The distribution of the 2013/14 DSG based on the 47 Academy conversions at March 2014 was £178,842 (£78,632 went to Academies).  Direct payments to Academies included Early Years = £267k and High Needs = £2.978k.  Paragraph 11 of the report provided a breakdown of the centrally retained DSG of £16.2m.


The DSG outturn for 2013/14 was £13.979m with an in-year underspend of £2.2m.  £1.665m has been allocated to School’s individual budgets for 2014.15.  The balance of £1.4m had yet to be allocated.


A technical sub group would be set up to deal with High Needs Funding.


Growth Fund Outturn 2013/14


The Growth Fund is for significant pre-16 growth in schools.  Funds are available to both maintained schools and academies.  Where a school has elected to expand they are not eligible for the Growth Fund.


The amount for 2013/14 was set at £800k and has been overspent by £217,831.  The Forum approved an increase to the budget of £200k making the total Fund £1m for 2014/15. 


2014/15 DSG Budget Allocation


The final DSG for 2014/15 is £182.388m.  This is based on:

·                Schools Block: £145.460m

·                Early Years: £12.116m

·                High Needs: £24.812m


The above amounts included payments directly to Academies of £83.832m, Early Years of £677k and High Needs of £3,272m.


Paragraph 26 of the report provided a breakdown of the centrally retained DSG of £18.3m for 2014/15.


Fair Schools Funding in 2015/16


The Forum noted that in March 2014 the Department for Education (DfE) launched a consultation on Fair Schools Funding in 2015/16.  The DfE proposed to allocate an additional £350m and increase the per pupil budgets for the least funded local authorities.  It was noted that no local authority would receive less funding as a result of this proposal.


The funding will be allocated based on minimum funding levels that a local authority should attract for its pupils. If the local authority falls below the level then their budget will be increased to meet those levels.


Paragraph 29 of the report provided an overview of the indicative minimum funding levels for each factor and for comparison Central Bedfordshire’s 2014/15 Funding levels.  The indicative allocation for Central Bedfordshire is £3.8m but is subject to consultation responses and updating using 2014/15 data.


The Technical Sub Group had met on 8 April and provided a response to the consultation document.  Minutes were attached to the report.  The Technical Sub Group were thanked for their time.




1.     That the 2013/14 DSG Outturn be noted.

2.     That the 2013/14 Growth Fund outturn be noted

3.     That the update on the 2014/15 DSG allocations be noted.

4.     That the 2015/16 consultation be noted.



Supporting documents: