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You can find the relevant publications relating to the Committee's work around Education. The Department for Education is on a par with the Department of Health and Social Care in terms of strains on funding and doubts over its long-term sustainability.
The Committee believes the Department has been unrealistic in its savings expectations, while having little in the way of contingency planning if these savings plans threaten the quality of education and pupil performance.
There is evidence that strains on the Department’s budget are hitting pupils directly. Cash shortages have led to many schools reviewing their options, such as reducing school hours in an attempt to save money. Some schools are offering a reduced curriculum; some are struggling to fund basic materials such as exercise books.
We are deeply concerned about the long-term impacts these ‘make-do’ measures will have on pupils, particularly those from the most disadvantaged backgrounds.
We have heard from headteachers the toll that working long hours has on staff and the potential impact on the quality of teaching. Our report on retaining and developing the teaching workforce found that the Department has failed to get a grip on the issue of teacher retention.
The Committee remains concerned about the management of school buildings, in particular the lack of clarity about the prevalence of asbestos and action to address the risks.
Government also continues with its policy of delivering new free schools, many in inappropriate buildings which are costly to buy and maintain and not suitable for the long-term education of pupils.
The Committee most recently took evidence from the Department in November 2018 for its inquiry examining the accounts and performance of academy schools.
A more detailed overview of its work on education is provided in the Chair’s Third Annual Report here.
Publications and correspondence relating to the Committee's work on Education can be found below and will be updated as relevant publications continue to emerge.
Inquiry: Academy accounts and performanceReport: Academy accounts and performance - Published 23 January
Inquiry: Sale of student loans Report: Sale of student loans - Published 22 November
Inquiry: Ofsted's inspection of schoolsReport: Ofsted's inspection of schools - Published 7 September
Inquiry: Converting schools to academiesReport: Converting schools to academies - Published 11 July
Inquiry: Delivering STEM skills for the economy Report: Delivering STEM skills for the economy - Published 22 June
Inquiry: The Higher Education marketReport: The Higher Education market - Published 15 June
Inquiry: Academy schools' financesReport: Academy schools' finances - Published 30 March
Inquiry: Alternative Higher Education ProvidersReport: Alternative Higher Education Providers - Published 7 March
Inquiry: The monitory, inspecting and funding of Learndirect Ltd.Report: The monitory, inspection and funding of Learndirect Ltd. - Published 2 March
Correspondence from Department for Education relating to the Committee's Third Report of session 2016-17- 23 July
Correspondence with the Comptroller and Auditor General concerning T levels - 7 June
Correspondence with Department for Education relating to academy schools' finances - 12 June ( PDF 100 KB)
Correspondence with the Department for Education - 27 March ( PDF 509 KB)
Inquiry: Capital funding for schoolsReport: Capital funding for schools - Published 26 April
Inquiry: Financial sustainability of schoolsReport: Financial sustainability of schools - Published 29 March
Inquiry: Retaining and developing the teaching workforceReport: Retaining and developing the teaching workforce - Published 31 January
Correspondence with National Union of Students relating to Learndirect - 8 November
Correspondence with TES - 5 December ( PDF 407 KB)
Correspondence from the Department for Education relating to the Committee's report on Child Protection - 18 September ( PDF 906 KB)
Correspondence from Chair of the Public Accounts Committee to the Department for Education relating to Learndirect - 31 August ( PDF 514 KB)
Correspondence with the Department for Education relating to Learndirect - 28 September ( PDF 245 KB)
Correspondence with the Department for Education relating to the Committee's forty-ninth Report of the Session 2016-17 on Financial sustainability of schools - 30 October ( PDF 1.98 MB)
Correspondence from the Chair to Department for Education Permanent Secretary relating to the Department Annual Reports and Accounts - 14 November ( PDF 2.36 MB)
Correspondence with Ofsted - 18 January ( PDF 1.38 MB)
Correspondence with Andy Palmer, Chief Executive, Learndirect - 16 January ( PDF 134 KB)
Correspondence with Department for Education - 21 January ( PDF 2.31 MB)
Correspondence with Ofsted - 9 February ( PDF 182 KB)
Further Correspondence with Ofsted - 9 February ( PDF 182 KB)
Inquiry: The apprenticeships programmeReport: The apprenticeships programme - Published 30 November
Inquiry: Entitlement to free early years education and childcareReport: Entitlement to free early years education and childcare - Published 15 June
Inquiry: Training new teachersReport: Training new teachers - Published 10 June
Inquiry: Overseeing financial sustainability in the further education sectorReport: Overseeing financial sustainability in the further education sector - Published 16 December
Inquiry: Funding for disadvantaged pupilsReport: Funding for disadvantaged pupils - Published 9 October
Correspondence to PAC from Permanent Secretary relating to the Committtee's Report on Excess Votes - 29 June 2015 ( PDF 333 KB)