NEW figures show huge differences in the amount Huddersfield schools spend per pupil.
Ministers have released the information to give parents a better idea how their children’s high school is performing.
Fartown High spent the most, investing £9,219 per pupil in 2009/10.
The school spent more than twice as much as the lowest-spending school, King James’s in Almondbury, which invested just £4,391 per pupil last year.
The figures include all staff and running costs.
Other high-spending schools in Kirklees include Newsome High, Nether Hall Learning Campus in Rawthorpe and Birkdale High in Dewsbury.
Salendine Nook High, Colne Valley College and Honley High were among the lowest-spending schools per pupil.
But Howard Roberts, Kirklees secretary of the National Union of Teachers, pointed out that schools in poorer areas needed more money than those in richer neighbourhoods.
“Schools like Fartown have huge additional needs – that’s what explains the difference in these figures,” he said.
“Children are not coming to school having had an equal start in life.
“Some schools have a higher number of pupils with special needs, learning difficulties and health issues.
“Some schools have more children with English as their second language, and children from an asylum-seeker background.”
Mr Roberts added that schools such as Fartown also spent more per child because they had relatively few pupils.
“Smaller schools still have to offer the full curriculum and they have to have a full management team,” he said.
“They also have to pay fixed costs for their buildings – no matter how many children are in them.”
Mr Roberts added he had no problem with the Government unveiling the figures.
He said: “There’s nothing to be feared by releasing these figures, but I hope the information isn’t used in a crude way to say ‘look at how much money they are getting’ because schools in Kirklees have vastly different costs.”
Education secretary Michael Gove released the figures yesterday.
He said: “Publishing all this information is a dramatic step-change in the accountability of the school system.
“The aim of publishing the school-by-school spending data is not to point fingers, but to ensure we better understand how the best and most effective schools achieve what they achieve with the money and resources they have.”
For more information visit www.education.gov.uk.