Schools in Powys will not move to a four-day week to reduce running costs, the county council has confirmed.

To help support schools with the pressures they face due to increasing energy and inflationary costs, Powys County Council has produced a financial management toolkit which included ideas on how to reduce costs around the school.

One of the potential options put forward in extreme cases was a four-day school week with the fifth day moving to online learning.

However, this option has now been removed by the council.

Cllr Pete Roberts, Cabinet Member for a Learning Powys, said: “The result of the national cost of living crisis and ever-increasing costs is having an impact on every household, business, school, and public body across the UK.

“We now expect to see the full impact of energy price increases over the next financial year. It is essential that schools are aware of the potential severity of the situation they face in preparing their budgets.

“That is why the council prepared a financial management toolkit for schools containing detailed budgetary comparison data and ideas on how to reduce costs around the school. A four-day school week was the most extreme of these options.

“However, the council has removed this option from the toolkit following advice from the Welsh Government, who were not supportive of schools moving to a four-day week at this time.

“This decision doesn’t mean the financial challenge has fundamentally improved just that there is one fewer option on the table. We will continue to support our schools and look at options to reduce their running costs which do not impact on our learners.”

Reacting to the news, MS for Brecon and Radnorshire James Evans said: “It’s entirely right that any suggestion of moving schools to a four-day week has been ditched.

“It was extremely disappointing that Powys Council even put this option forward, especially when you consider all the school days children missed due to pandemic restrictions.

“Our children need face-to-face education, and I’m pleased the concerns of local Conservatives have been listened to and acted upon.”