Common funding scheme
Under the provisions of the Education and Libraries (Northern Ireland) Order 2003, a Common Funding Scheme (Scheme) has been drawn up to apply to all grant-aided schools funded under the Local Management of Schools (LMS) arrangements.
From 1st April 2005, all grant-aided schools have been funded under the common funding formula arrangements set out in the Common Funding Scheme.
Scheme documents are available to view for the following financial years:
- Common funding scheme 2018-2019
- Common funding scheme 2017-2018
- Common funding scheme 2016-2017
- Common funding scheme 2015-2016
- Common funding scheme 2014-2015
- Common funding scheme 2013-2014
- Common funding scheme 2012-2013
Budgets for schools
Funding authorities issue formal budget notification letters to their respective schools to confirm details of their budget shares each year.
The following publications provide summary totals of the indicative delegated budget allocations for all grant-aided schools for each of the respective years calculated under the Common Funding Formula (CFF) arrangements.
- Common Funding Formula Budgets for Schools 2019-20
- Common Funding Formula Budgets for Schools 2018-19
- Common Funding Formula Budgets for Schools 2017-18
- Revised Common funding formula budgets for schools 2016-17
- Common funding formula budgets for schools 2016-17
- Revised Common funding formula budgets for schools 2015-16
- Common funding formula budgets for schools 2015-16
- Common funding formula budgets for schools 2014-15
- Common funding formula budgets for schools 2013-14
- Common funding formula budgets for schools 2012-13
The basis for Local Management of Schools (LMS), with delegated responsibilities and delegated budgets, is the Education Reform (Northern Ireland) Order 1989 (Part V as amended by the 2003 Order).
The Common Funding Scheme (CFS) did not alter the principles of LMS, but established a single system for the funding of all grant-aided schools on a consistent and equitable basis, irrespective of location or sector, and was first implemented in April 2005.
Independent review of the common funding scheme
In June 2012, Education Minister, John O’Dowd MLA, appointed an independent panel, chaired by Sir Robert Salisbury, to review the Common Funding Scheme which determines how funds are allocated to schools.
Launch of the review
The panel was asked to examine if the Scheme was fit for purpose, sufficiently targeted social need and was consistent with, and supported, the Department of Education’s policy objectives.
The review panel submitted its findings and recommendations to the Minister for Education in January 2013. The report, including the original terms of reference, can be accessed using the link below.
- An Independent Review of the Common Funding Scheme
- Independent panel to review schools funding scheme – press announcement (NI Executive website)
The Minister took time to consider the recommendations in the report and set out his position on the proposed way forward for the Common Funding Scheme in a statement to the Assembly on 11 June 2013.
- Minister for Education's statement to the Assembly "Putting pupils first: reforming the Common Funding Scheme"
The Department of Education’s formal response to each of the 29 recommendations in the report is available below.
- Response by the Department of Education to the recommendations contained in the report from the independent review of the Common Funding Scheme
- Update on Recommendations as at 30 September 2018
Consultation on the proposed changes
A consultation on the proposed changes to the Common Funding Scheme ended on 25th October 2013. For more information on the consultation and associated documentation, please use the link below:-