Theresa May 'reins in £27bn schools spending demand' amid row over her legacy

Posted On: 
23rd June 2019

Theresa May has reportedly scaled back her demand for a £27billion "legacy" cash boost for schools amid a row with the Treasury.

The outgoing PM was said to be at odds with the Chancellor over the education funding call.

According to the Sunday Telegraph, the Prime Minister has ditched her attempt to secure the three-year funding boost for schools in her final days in Number 10.

Instead, Downing Street and the Treasury are said to be discussing plans for a more limited, one-off cash injection of around £9bn.

EXCL Theresa May defied Tory MPs to launch 'legacy spending spree'

EXCL Theresa May urged to ‘rescue her legacy’ and keep promises to refugee kids

Philip Hammond 'prepared to quit' over Theresa May's plan for legacy spending spree

The call to significantly ramp up schools spending comes amid anger from some Tory MPs at what is being seen as an attempt to use public money to secure a legacy for Mrs May as she prepares to leave Downing Street.

Th outgoing Prime Minister has pressed ahead with a series of major announcements as she enters her final month in the top job.

They include high-profile pledges on mental health support, as well as a vow to slash carbon emissions in the UK to net-zero by 2050 - despite a warning from Philip Hammond that it will cost £1trillion.

The Chancellor was also said to be fiercely resisting the call for a £27bn education spending boost - with reports this week that he could even be prepared to quit over the demand.

A Whitehall source told the paper that Mr Hammond would be more willing to accept the scaled-back plan as it would not amount to a pledge that stretched for "years and years".  

PoliticsHome has learned that Tory MPs were canvassed on Mrs May's spending plans by Government whips - who were met with a "uniformly negative" response.

One minister said: "The whips asked us all a few weeks ago what we thought about it and they were told by everyone that it was a bad idea.

"It's just very selfish and a clear attempt to tie the hands of her successor. She should not be doing it, it's as simple as that."

In a swipe at Mrs May's chief of staff and former Tory MP Gavin Barwell, they added: "What's she going to announce next - a mission to Mars? We could maybe call it the Barwell Probe."