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The report provides an analysis of financial reserves held by schools as at 31 March 2022.

Main points

  • The overall level of reserves held by schools in Wales was £301 million at 31 March 2022, the equivalent of £659 per pupil. The overall level of reserves increased by £121 million compared with the previous year. Reserves in primary schools accounted for £175 million.
  • Over the past two financial years, school reserves increased significantly due to the effect of the COVID-19 pandemic and extra core funding announced late in the year. Schools have continued to receive their normal core funding plus additional COVID-19 funding whilst having reduced expenditure on elements such as supply teachers, staff training, examinations, educational materials and utility bills due to various periods of school closure.
  • Primary schools reserves increased by £55 million in the latest year and secondary school reserves increased by £55 million.
  • Gwynedd had the highest level of reserves per pupil at £1,012 while Powys had the lowest with £531 per pupil.
  • 28 primary, 12 secondary, 1 special, 1 nursery and 2 middle schools in Wales had negative reserves totalling £8 million. The remaining 1,435 schools had positive reserves, 994 of which had reserves in excess of 10% of their total delegated expenditure.


Reserves held by schools, as at 31 March 2022 , file type: PDF, file size: 448 KB

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Anthony Newby

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