I have been predicting for some time that some of the big structural changes to public services are likely to destabilise the financial systems in health, education and local government. So it comes as no surprise that tens of millions of pounds have been ‘accidentally’ awarded to new Academy Schools.
Chris Cook reports in today’s Financial Times (£) that most of the 842 schools that took Academy status in 2010-11 were “accidentally” given huge cash incentives to do so, despite government pledges not to fund them any differently from local authority controlled schools. On average they received £118,000 extra, but in some cases as much as £358,000 additional funds.
The next big disaster waiting to happen is in health, where funding will soon switch from a straight-forward geographical and formula funding regime for PCTs will be replaced by a mixed patient and locality formla funding system for GP dominated Clinical Commissioning Groups. Disasters are almost inevitable.