According to a council briefing, schools in Powys, Wales, could teach pupils online for one day a week to save on rising heating bills. Wearing coats in class and leaving staff positions unfilled is among the possible cost-saving measures sent to headteachers in the area.
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The county’s cabinet member for education must consider every option to deal with a financial crisis. But each school will be left to decide how to make the savings.
Pete Roberts, the Powys cabinet member for education, told a council meeting that school budgets were being looked at “very closely” in light of rising costs. He said: “We have had to look at ways of saving money, and one suggested is having one day a week where lessons are taught online.”
According to Mr Roberts, the measure would help save on heating costs and provide a “contingency” in case of severe weather conditions.
It is not yet clear how the online lessons will be delivered or how much money the council hopes to save by introducing the measure. But Mr Roberts said that each school would be able to make its own decisions about how to implement the change.
The news comes as schools across Wales face increasing pressure on their budgets. In November, the Welsh government announced an extra £20m of funding for education, but this is only a fraction of the estimated £800m shortfall in school budgets across the country.
This would mean pupils could access their lessons from home, potentially freeing up school space and saving on heating costs.
But some parents have raised concerns about the proposal, with one saying it would be “a backward step”.
What do you think of the idea? Would it work in your school? Let us know in the comments below.