The Institute for Fiscal Studies (IFS) has found that there has been a ‘significant reorientation of spending towards statutory help for children in crisis’, and that children’s services spending has been ‘largely frozen’ since 2009/10.
Other findings of the Public Spending on Children in England: 2000 to 2020
report, published by the Children's Commissioner for England, Anne Longfield, include:
- spending on local authority-delivered children’s services doubled over the 2000s, but is due to fall back by about 20%;
- overall education spending increased considerably during the 2000s and has been largely protected since 2010, but this disguises cuts to funding for 16-18 education of around 17% between 2009-10 and 2019-20 – this means sixth form and further education spending per student will be at the same level in 2019-20 as it was in 1989-90;
- total benefits spending for families with children in 2019-20 will be £57bn, 43% above the level of £40 bn in 2000-01, but a fall of 11% since 2009-10; and
- the rate of child poverty today is around double the rate of pensioner poverty.