SCHOOLS are still struggling with 'extremely tight budgets' despite assurance of more funding.

In summer the Government announced plans to plough an extra £14bn into schools in the next three years, but some cash-strapped Oxfordshire schools are dubious it will make a difference.

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Wheatley CE Primary School referred to the pledge in its latest newsletter, stating: "While these plans are a welcome step in the right direction and go some way towards closing the gap, the details of this funding have yet to be released.

"We do not yet have clarity as to whether this will represent a real term increase.

"It is entirely possible that the increase might still be significantly short of what is required to make up for the eight per cent real terms cut in school funding over the last 10 years."

The letter also referred to government plans to increase pay for new teachers, and said while this is good for recruitment, it will result in another rise in costs.

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It adds: "We will continue to make our school a place where children and young people develop and thrive.

"There are still difficult choices facing all schools - your continued help and support, in any way you can, would be greatly appreciated."

St Ebbe's CE Primary School in Oxford wrote to parents this week, encouraging pupils to have a school meal on census day on Thursday, as this will affect their funding.

The newsletter said: "Like many other schools, St Ebbe’s has an extremely tight budget and we are constantly seeking new ways to increase our income and reduce our costs, so we can employ the best possible teaching and support staff to look after your children.

"It is estimated that if every infant child in school had a free school meal on the two census days, we might generate enough additional funding to pay for a teaching assistant for a year."