Britain funding cuts for European School teaching posts explained

Photo: Serge Waldbillig

Officials from the British government's education department are to outline a new policy reducing funding for British teaching posts in European Schools at a meeting in Luxembourg.

The meeting, scheduled for Wednesday afternoon, will be a chance for British parents with children at one of the two European schools in the Grand Duchy to find out how the policy will affect them.

Under the changes announced last month, the British government proposes to second fewer teaching posts so that the number of British teachers seconded to the schools is more proportionate to the number of British students and pupils studying there.

The European School's Board of Governors has passed a resolution to this effect which would result in the UK seconding 114 teachers instead of the 217 teachers currently seconded.

Any shortfall in teaching numbers would reportedly be made up by recruiting teachers locally whose posts would be funded by the European Commission.

“The UK currently provides more teachers to the European Schools than any other Member State.

"In the current economic climate, which has necessitated very careful housekeeping within our domestic national schooling system, the Government has had to look again at its spending on education overseas, to ensure we are adding value where most needed," British Ambassador to Luxembourg Alice Walpole told, adding: “The most important consideration is that the European Schools are able to employ competent, well qualified teachers with good English skills.

"We have every confidence in the ability of the European Schools to identify and engage good teachers to replace those who would have been provided by the UK Government, and we have offered practical assistance with this process.

"My Embassy has asked the Department of Education to meet with European School parents on Wednesday to explain the background to the decision and to provide an opportunity for parents to raise any concerns which they may have.”

Under UK government plans the change which, according to the ambassador will save the education department 5 million GBP per year, would come into effect in September this year.